In the previous post, I mentioned that Alzheimer’s generally is catagorized in three stages. Here I’ll describe Mild Alzheimer’s Disease, or Stage 1.
The first symptom generally is memory loss. However, since memory loss or decrease can be caused by a variety of aging ailments, it doesn’t necessarily indicate that a person will develop Alzheimer’s.
But if memory loss continues, look for other symptoms:
- The person repeats the same thing over and over or repeatedly asks the same question even though you’ve answered them.
- They get lost easily even though they’re familiar with directions or the area.
- They lose or misplace items more frequently than normal.
- They confuse names for common items.
- They hide items in unusual places.
- They experience some changes in personality.
We often hear the expression, “They died two deaths,” in reference to someone who has developed Alzheimer’s. The person we knew disappears into the world of memory loss and it’s complications and later dies the physical death. We also may consider we have grieved twice during this time.
However, I didn’ consider that I dealth with grief twice with my mom. Once I realized she had developed Alzheimer’s and I couldn’t change that situation, I was to bring her enjoyment in her world and learn to concentrate on “this moment in time.” Yes, Mother had changed. She was no longer the Mother I’d known throughout my life.
Yet life wasn’t static before this period. We’d encountered many changes in our family life and Mother had taught us to live with them consider it an adventure. Some were not always to our liking; some were beyond our control. But we could decide how we were going to approach them.
Mother’s, and Auntie’s, developing Alzheimer’s was another change in our lives. I look back upon their Alzheimer’s years and I realize I learned from both of these ladies in how to face life. I hope I brought them joy in their memory loss years, even when they may not have realized who I was.