Monday, June 23, 2008
This is my grandma. It's the only recent picture I have of her. She's not really there in any other pictures I've taken. She is 91 years old, and she lives in a nursing home. I see her once a week and it's so hard to go. I never know if it's going to be a good day or a bad day. She doesn't have many good days lately. Dementia isn't like it's portrayed in books and movies. It's second to second. She could be there, and asking about specific family members, and then she gets a confused look and she asks you who you are. On the good days, she's present about 70% of the time. It's much worse on the bad days. In the early days, when she started losing her memory; she would recite the alphabet to figure out what word she was trying to think of. Now, when I see her, it's like we're each reciting our own monologues in two different languages. I tell her what's happening for me; and she recites the alphabet. She is trying so hard to communicate- and she can't. I don't know if she's treated well, I don't know if she wants anything, I don't know if she even remembers I'm her granddaughter. This situation tests my faith; in humanity, in God, in myself. How can this be the strong-willed, independant woman from my childhood? What purpose is there here?