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  Home > Health/Wellness > Stories > Learning To Speak Alzheimer's: My Wife's Story. (Part One)
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Learning To Speak Alzheimer's: My Wife's Story. (Part One)!
By Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado   


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A man deals with his wife's diagnosis of Alzheimer's.

Ethel Bean is my honey, my life, my everything.

Now that she has Alzheimer's, I will do all I can to help her deal with her worsening dementia and overall decline in her physical health.  It isn't easy by a long shot, but with God's grace, we will make it through ... together.

My wife still remembers, but those days where she is lucid are becoming fewer and far between.  She repeatedly asks me questions, questions about what day or date or year it is, who the president is, who familiar people are, or where things are located.  Ethel forgets where the kitchen is or the bedroom; I am always having to tell her; if not, I have to physically take her there myself.  She asks about Darryl, our son who died when he was a baby; she asks if she can take him out of his crib so she can feed him or change his diaper.

She doesn't understand that it was 20 years ago when Darryl passed away.  It truly breaks my heart, especially when I have to tell her that he died 20 years ago.

Ethel can still walk, but she falls; therefore, I (or someone else) has to be with her at all times.  She forgets where things are and oftentimes puts the keys in the fefrigerator, her purse in the oven, or her walker in the bathroom and attempts to walk by herself (and usually ends up falling or stumbling over herself).  I am terrified that Ethel will break a hip (or something else), so this is one reason why she needs constant supervision.

These past five years since The Diagnosis have truly been hell, not only on myself, but Ethel and our entire family.  They see how she is now (as opposed to how she used to be before "the forgetfulness" set in), and people just don't seem to understand how to deal with it or shy away from us.  It's really sad how we have lost friends because of Ethel's illness.

I know that in the future, Ethel will probably get worse to where she will have to be placed into nursing home care, but for now, I will try to help her all I can, and so will friends who have chosen to stick by us in this journey together.  All I can do is pray that a cure for Alzheimer's is found before it is too late (and I'm thinking that some days it may already BE too late for Ethel and thousands more like her).

~To be continued.~



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