Sunday, April 24, 2022

The Two Lynda's

 April 23, 2022

It's a Saturday.


Today begins the start of the annual New Jersey Wool Walk.  

According to the NJWW website:

What is the NJWW?
During this yearly event, participating yarn stores offer special events, discounts, designer appearances, book signings, and trunk shows. 

This year's event starts today and goes until May, 1.  

I believe this is the first in-person event since the pandemic.

In past years I would have been out the door already with Ross, a list of yarn shops and a map in tow. 

Although I am tempted, this year I'm not motivated.  Perhaps that's because instead of being the leisurely passenger and navigator I will be the driver/navigator.

Besides I am comfortably ensconced in my cozy knitting knook at the moment.

I am also on a strict yarn diet.  Although, I could use a skein of Mohair for that future project which has yet to be decided. 

I am feeling kind of down today and a little lethargic Maybe I need to go to a yarn store or two.  I'm thinking that yarn sensory therapy just might be the ticket.   

April 24, 2022

It's a Sunday

Well, we didn't go to the woolwalk.  

One of the learning experiences I have had over these past two years is that Ross is much better when we are out and about.

Thinking about how yesterday turned out, we most definitely should have gone.    

I asked Ross several times during the morning if he was interested in visiting our favorite yarn store.  He shook his head.  "No," he said.  "I just don't feel like it."

As I continued about my day, going through the house doing laundry, straightening, thinking about what to prepare for lunch, I suddenly noticed it had been a few minutes since I had seen Ross. 

When we are in the house, Ross is usually not out of my site for more than a few minutes.  

As I started to look in each room calling his name, I noticed the front door was ajar.  I stepped out and looked up and down the street but didn't see him.  

At this point in our Alzheimer's journey Ross doesn't recognize where he lives.   Even though the houses in our development are uniform, they are different, but in Ross' world he cannot disquinish which house is his.  

Although this isn't the first time this has happened,  his behavior is usually an indication that he might want to "wander".  This time I had no warning. 

I must say, the first couple of times Ross has wandered off, I panicked.  I had that stomach drop feeling, like when you lose your child in the mall.  

But yesterday I was rather calm. I guess that's because I knew I would find him safe and sound. 

 I got my car keys with the intention of driving around to look for him.  I knew he couldn't have gone too far.  When I got outside, I again looked down the street and I spotted them, two blocks away.   It was Ross with one of our neighbors.  They were arm in arm and she was walking him towards our house. 

As I said this isn't the first time.  But my feelings were different this time.  

The first few times he wandered I got angry at Ross.  

"Why did you do that?" I would say in my upset parent voice.  And then I would lecture about the dangers of him being out alone. 

But, that was inexperienced caregiver anger.  That was the lack of understanding anger.  

Yesterday, I still felt angry, but my anger is directed at this horrible disease.  

I feel frustrated because I don't know how to stop Ross from wandering.  I fact, 20 minutes later, he did the exact same thing.  I found him standing in front of that same neighbor's house.  Interestingly enough, her name is Linda. My neighbor Linda and I look nothing alike. 

So instead of going to the NJWW we wound up going to the German Butcher shop.  Ross loves to go there.  I'd like to say that the rest of the day was swell, but it wasn't.   

We have nice moments during each day.  Some days those moments add up to hours.  Some days the not so nice moments seem like hours.

 Perhaps today we will go to the New Jersey Wool Walk.  I could really use that sensory yarn therapy. 

            

12 comments:

  1. Oh Lynda,my grandmother as well as my Dad had Alzheimer's and they wandered. You explained it so well. My heart goes out to you as you navigate these days. Love, Sharon in Maine (niniknitsalot)

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    1. Sharon, I am sorry you had the experience with your grandmother and your Dad. Thank you for your kind words :)

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  2. Oh how I feel for you on this path! Everyday being a new learning curve of this illness is not something that any person should have to deal with. But it does seem that you have now learnt fast and found some way in which you can spend some 'enjoyment time' by going out and about. Maybe you do need to visit those yarn stores more often, even if just to browse for your therapy and for Ross to get out and see new things. Big hugs as always Lynda xx (and so lovely to have had a chance to talk yesterday!!)

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  3. Hari OM
    Crikey, Ross ol' chap... Lynda doesn't need palpitations added to her list!!! I love that the neighbour knew and understood and could redirect.

    Lynda... I can feel the deep breaths and gritted teeth from here. Fair enough. Now, did you get to the wool walk? And would you consider adding a lock to the exit doors, such as would be the case in a facility? YAM xx

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    1. Hello Yamini. My first thought was to add a lock, My fear is that if I made it too difficult for Ross to manage, it might make it more difficult for me too and I am afraid of not being able to quickly leave in case of a fire. Never did make it to the wool walk, but maybe the next one.

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  4. That's scary. Glad that he was found safe and sound, but I imagine how worried you'd get, even when you know that he can't have gone far.

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  5. Hi Lynda I really feel for you on this journey .Do you get any help on managing your situation? It is a lot of work for you plus the constant worry .My mother now has start of dementia,she wanders around every night in the early hours .My brother is now living at home to watch over her .He keeps the doors locked to stop her walking off . I hope you can get some free help and support.I hope you did get to the wool shop .It is important to put yourself first sometimes as your health and wellbeing is priority when you are a carer .I wish you some happy days ,with love Sylvia xx

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    1. Thank you so much Sylvia for your lovely caring comment. I do not have help here. I tried having someone come in a couple of times a week for a few hours a day. Unfortunately there was an incident which the woman was not able to handle, so I had to terminate that service. I was quite disappointed because the agency assured me that their staff was well trained with dementia clients. I have been reluctant to try again. The other obstacle is cost. It can get very expensive and insurance here does not cover in home caregiving.

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  6. Linda I am so sorry. I know what you are going through. My Mom has Parkinsons and Lewey body dementia. We have her in hospice home care. A nurse and an aide comes in once a week. You can have them come in more often if need be. It doesn't mean Mom is dying anytime soon. She can be in hospice care for years. This care does not cost us anything. I urge you to find a hospice care facility. I use Vitality. We used there services for my Dad too. You and Ross are in my prayers. ❤🙏

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    1. Thanks for the info, Pat. We had my mom living with us 10 years ago. She had cancer. We had hospice care for her and I cannot say enough about the care she received.

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