Saturday, June 25, 2016

Parkinsons: Sister Disease to Lewy Body Dementia

Muhammed Ali was laid to rest; his greatest battle was with Parkinsons, sister Dementia to Lewy Body Dementia.

They're all related, the Dementias; they are diseases attacking the brain, slowly reducing and often completely taking away capacity and capability. 

Some, like Alzheimer's are the robbers, stealing completely what they find. 

Others, like Parkinson's and Lewy Body Dementia inhibit, then limit and finally remove ability and capability while providing a battleground the strongest manage to wage war upon and fight until all the reserves, the remainders, are weakened or destroyed.

Praises for Muhammed Ali's fighting against the disease were given by those high and wide in society; from Presidents to people on the street. 

What isn't being said as loudly is this is a battle we should all be fighting, all be aware exists and should be fought on every street corner, in every group and organization and every individual home. AWARENESS. ACTION. ALIGNMENT.

Awareness. It's a disease; like any other it has a root, a basis and there can be actions and decisions made to conquer it as we are conquering other major life changing diseases like Cancer and Heart disease/problems.

Action. Realizing this killer stalks and preys on people who have been involved in sports involving hard contact with the head -- football, wrestling, soccer, prize fighting, to name a few -- and people with no history of exposing their bodies to physical abuse. Why? What are the similarities when there's such a difference in how someone chooses to live, to work, to play?

Alignment. Understanding Dementia is not a disease of age, it's a disease of circumstances we do not yet understand.


Like Cancer in the beginning we're just becoming aware there are many possibilities and potentials for "contracting" the disease -- maybe some genetic, maybe some lifestyles, maybe some environmental, maybe some we're yet to discover.

YOU and I hold the keys to this Pandora's Box through becoming involved in learning, observing and raising our voices loudly and long for more understsanding, more information, more realization that Dementia isn't relegated nor is it always "natural" as we grow older.


What can we learn and do with knowledge to begin to understand and eventually prevent the mushrooming cloud of Dementia from overcoming society as Cancer has done for so long.

When do we realize through sharing medical information, insights and conjectures, we gain a world where we can focus on living together more harmoniously and more equally.

Where will we go from here, from another loss of life to a group of Diseases that kill slowly and challenges the weakest and the strongest among us.

How will you live today and tomorrow? 

Will you live in fear or finding ways to learn, to combat and to eventually eradicate Dementia as we're working so long and so hard against many other diseases.

Your future is in your hands; the future of those you love and care about depends on your choices.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Time In A Bottle

A song from earlier in life, "Time in a Bottle" comes to mind ...

when I think about daughter and my experiences many Saturdays going to local Garage and Yard Sales...

It's become a ways and means of getting out, getting away, spending very little, usually a couple of dollars on an item we'd spend far more on in a store ....

while gaining a different perspective on our lives.

We see other people's lives set out on tables, displayed throughout homes they live/lived in ... collections, mementos, decor, clothing, items of everyday living....

It's been eye opening and healing to see--

There are others -- out there -- who've lived similar lifestyles, bought styles and items others now see as "worthless" and without merit -- especially my oldest son (yes, still a thorn in my side, unfortunately).

Why did I and do I allow this adverse influence to negatively affect me?  

Is it common for Mothers to continue to bear the challenges inflicted on them by grown children who have yet to mature or who may never reach that maturity where others are as important as and often more important than "self"?

Time has personal healing properties and I've been travelling the road of re-establishing my personal worth beyond oldest son's evaluations of me. 

Children . . . some never seem to completely grow up.

It's through my working to reinstate myself in the world and revaluing my self in my own eyes and not looking at the glass as half empty and not needing this son's approval, his favor, that I continue and know change is inevitable even if it's not in his actions, words or deeds.

Eyes are opened when you walk in the homes, the lives, of others.

There are the 

"weeders" -- those who've decided to sell unneeded or grown out of items -- mostly families who've moved past children of one age and not planning another "addition" so they sell to acquire, usually, for the next stage, the new levels of wants and needs.

"participators" -- those who get into a garage sale in their neighborhood or "try one on" to see if they can "move, get rid of, dump or sell" items they no longer want, need or may have as a part time business and a garage sale is an additional market.

"life changers" -- something is happening in their lives; they're moving to another location if they're younger or downsizing if they're older; or, sadly, a loss of one or more residents of the house, the home, where memories remain after items are removed OR like us, struggling to make ends meet and finding items they can "do without" or find no current use for to attempt to sell in this way or others.

Occasionally, as a recent past weekend, you walk through a life you don't know for certain but believe a catastrophe has occurred because of what is "left behind", what remains.

There are items from all family members, including children. Not items usually "given away" or "given up". 

We don't ask. We don't overhear any comments. We just "feel".

Items of little marketable value and not disposable or "get rid of" are what we usually find at the yard and garage sales. 

Then, there's the items that should be tossed or given to a secondary market (charity stores) but usually the "owners" have some attachment or need to try to make some money and so try to sell, often way above the worth of the article, at a garage/yard sale.

What's been helpful as we've moved forward with our lives, and especially to me as my oldest son has found so much "wrong" with the decisions we made, his father and I but mostly me, to purchase items for ourselves and our home is finding out how many others in our "age group" made the same choices, collected the same things, decorated in the same ways.

I remember having garage sales, one of many ways we tried to raise additional money when we were struggling to provide just the basics and pay the bills

Every quarter mattered and every dollar was carefully totaled adding to another ability to pay a bill or survive a little longer at the base minimal level we'd arrived at.

Care Giving is costly. It taxes your body, mind, spirit and finances when the person lives directly with you and when your means are not sufficient to provide the life they deserve, the life they need.

I wouldn't have lived any other way; I regret not one moment, and would do it again, willingly. 

There is no price that can be placed, no personal losses too extensive when a child, spouse or parent in a family needs you to be there for them in times of medical and personal challenges.

What was not needed, what was extremely harmful, were the suppositions and allegations of a family member and of an outsider, someone who was never a part of the lives of the family, who decided they "knew best" and that included acting in harmful, deceptive and what most would consider illegal ways without concern or care for the family unit they were affecting, the lives they were altering and changing -- forever.

This blog aims to enlighten, to share, to provide insights into the challenges and possibilities and to compare the footprints of generations then and now of individuals and of cultures who accept and who nurture throughout the lifetimes of their members.

To shine the light on realities and harshness; 
To benefit through knowledge and awareness; 
To give hope and to provide insight gained ...

as we continue to travel the road of moving onward with sometimes standing still, sometimes falling backwards and always picking up what's been dropped, what's fallen aside, what needs to be carried onward while leaving behind what should remain.

Let our footprints in the sands of time remain deep and clear and when we choose to pick up and carry someone for a distance, let's remember we are walking in bigger footsteps and being carried ourselves.

Friday, June 10, 2016

What Am I Doing? Where Am I Going? I'm Not Used To Having So Many Choices...

It's quiet this morning. Birds are singing and I'm listening to NPR and feel a large amount of calm, of peace and of self determination.

I can't remember having the choices I have today for many years.  Certainly not for the last five plus years since my husband's passing and the last two since Mom's and for the years before that as the path we didn't see was being set before us in Mom's growing medical challenges -- what we now see as the declines of Lewy Body Dementia.

We're moving forward. Daughter is being transitioned from a minimum wage job to a position where she can actually grow and become using her gifts and talents. An actual career path -- a long deserved use of her capabilities and abilities rather than just a "job", a place to go to "work".

I'm changing from a job that was causing me significant stress and was a dead end failing to acknowledge and use my skills and abilities but put a little food on the table and helped to pay other bills while daughter went through a special training program.

I understand holding on and making do. Working together, we not only survived, we're regaining lost and misplaced parts of life.

I'm focused on restarting my life in a familiar area where I'd spent a great portion of my professional life. I've started the journey and the path seems to be widening and far more sturdy and extensive for my wants and needs.

I'm exploring other opportunities and possibilities. We have the privilege of choices, now. We work together unifying and strengthening our individual selves and our family unit.

People generally don't understand today just as they didn't when my Mom came to live with our family about multi generational living. Millennials may change this mindset; Baby Boomers haven't been able to break the mold even when parents could greatly use this way of living.

It's not a new concept. Look around and see how other cultures value their populations from birth through all the stages and ages. We, in the United States, isolate and violate our elders through cutting them off, isolating them and then spending billions on the "challenges" we create.

Oldest son tried many ways to break us apart. He's focused on his sister and tried to "reason with" her to move out, get away, claiming I would "destroy her" like I destroyed him. 

Daughter has inner strength. She understands his choices, his actions and his decisions and witnessed how he negatively affected her life, our lives and his own. She's not his "little sister"; she's a wise and capable person in her own right, much to his distress.

It's always interesting when I hear adults who've lived on their own, who've made their own decisions for decades, claim their lives' challenges and problems were caused by others, especially a parent or parents. When you look closely, you see a pattern they set, they evolved and they decided early on and who continue not to be capable of changing those basic instincts and actions.

Daughter encourages; oldest son discourages.

Two supporters , one son and one daughter, and one distractor. Who should I listen to?

My Self. I continue to be capable. I welcome input. I make choices and decisions and do not cede this authority to anyone who has their self interests above what is my interest.

I'm exploring and finding more possibilities and directions.
I encourage all of you who've found yourself in this life stage to do the same.

Go while you can.
Do what you find interesting.
Be who you're meant to be.