Dementia Man: A Big Move to California
Transcribed by Honey B Wackx
I don’t know all the details and cannot include them here, but apparently Mr. Q aroused people that there was something wrong. He was ultimately sent to a convalescent home for about a month.
It was determined he had dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Because of that was not capable of caring for himself properly.
Mr. Q was ordered not to go back home. We were selected to be the ones to care for him and he was flown to California to live with us in our home in Lake Elsinore.
I was told he was here once about forty seven or forty-eight years ago once for vacation. Since then I don’t believe Mr. Q left his home state, except maybe for a field trip with his class a time or two.
This was not an arbitrary move. We knew him very well. However I had not seen him in at least twenty-five years. The last time I saw him he was in fine condition and was not sick. I don’t believe he was ever sick until now.
We have an RCFE (Residential Care Facility for the Elderly) and care for a few elder people. We have had several residents who have had dementia or Alzheimer’s.
We have two other residents right now who have dementia. One is not nearly as serious a case as Mr. Q. In fact you would not notice it at all, except for her memory is getting worse. But that seems to happen to everyone when they get old.
The other is a serious case of dementia, but that person is immobile unlike Mr. Q, and poses no real problem at all. She just requires a lot of extra care.
Our dementia/Alzheimer’s experience
So we have had experience with both Alzheimer’s and dementia. There seems to be some confusion about dementia and Alzheimer’s. Even in definitions of the terms, but the definition that includes Alzheimer’s disease as a form of dementia is the one I believe.
Everyone with either of these does not act the same or have the same problems. But if one has Alzheimer’s they will eventually die from it or before with some other problem. Some live a few years or less, while others can live up to ten years in some cases.
While I say we, ninety-five percent of the experience is my wife’s and my measly bit of experience comes from dealing with Mr. Q and seeing all the problems and things those residents with dementia or Alzheimer’s faced.
We have had such residents for about nine years in our house. My wife has had additional experience in many other places, as well as in convalescent homes dealing with both dementia and Alzheimer’s for the past twenty three years.
So for all practical purposes I am a newbie when it comes to daily dealing with someone with either dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Believe me when I say it is very difficult. And I am no stranger to Alzheimer’s either since my father had it the last few years of his life.
Fortunately for me, but unfortunately for my mother, I did not have to deal with it since I had long since moved out of their house. My mother bore the brunt of it until it became too much for her and he was ultimately put in a convalescent home.
As his condition got worse my father had to be put into a locked unit. We hated to see that, but something had to be done and we decided that was the best thing to do.
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