Mom’s Fading Mind

I wrote an essay about my mom’s struggles with Alzheimer’s and it was published at Longreads. It was a hard and emotional thing to write but was greatly aided by recordings I made of various conversations with my mom. Here are some photos of my mother, who is still living in the Olympia area. We’re working on getting her into a more full-time care facility. In the past few months, her behavior has become more agitated and she sometimes acts violent. She’s been on anti-depressants for over a year but sometimes refuses to take them. Lately, she has attempted to get out of the car when my brother Mark is driving her somewhere. She’ll say that they’re going the wrong direction and try to open the door as the car is moving. Along with losing memory, she has become manic and fearful.

I know a lot of people who have dealt with this terrible disease or are currently doing so. I hope those people will find some kind of comfort in this essay and remember who the Alzheimer’s patient/loved one was before the disease. I really hope that someday they find some kind of cure.

Patsy holding Elinda (w someone named Jean)
Mom holding Elinda, her first child
Patsy (w: dog) & Her Sister Betty
Mom, holding her dog with one of her sisters
Mom w Dad (probably late 1950s)
Mom with Dad, probably late 1950s
Mom (around age 17)
Mom in her Hallway2017
Mom in the hallway where she continuously walks in laps, August 2017

Patsy on Tire

3 responses to “Mom’s Fading Mind”

  1. Thank you for this post. So many of us are dealing with aging parents and grandparents. I hope there will be an accessible cure soon as well.

  2. Kevin –
    first I am terribly sorry about your mom. Your mom is my grandfather’s sister. My grandfather was Thomas. He also had a similar Alzheimer’s story with angry outbursts prior to his death several years ago. Watching someone you love change is so hard. I’ve been thinking about him a lot lately so it was so crazy to run across your article and see the parallels of their late lives. I’ll be thinking of you and your (our) family.
    Be well.

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