As were nearing September I wanted to post something about the awful disease that is dementia. Its a topic close to my heart having lived through my nan having it and I have worked with people who suffer from this illness for many years. It never gets easier to watch someone lose themselves in front of your very eyes. This disease shows no mercy and the support out there is limited. More awareness of the condition is needed and the harsh reality that is faced by the individual and their families.
I have always loved working with elderly people, they have lived through so much and I could sit and listen to their stories and wise words all day long. I’ve learnt so much from the people I have cared for and some things will never leave me and have changed the way i think and feel about life.
When living with dementia sometimes their stories can become lost or confused, Sometimes it is up to others to help them find their identity and sometimes it is kinder to embrace this new person they have become because underneath the surface they are still them. Dementia doesn’t define them it’s just apart of them and it doesn’t always mean that the rest of their days are full of sadness. Some of my fondest memories of my nan are when she was in the grips of dementia.
As a carer I have always done my best for the people I have cared for and tried to give a 100% and I hope that I made a difference to some of them and made them forget their illness if only for a little while. You can never know what a person is thinking or feeling unless you have experienced this disease yourself but working with many people who have had different strokes of this disease I have imagined some of the things they might be feeling.
I wrote this poem along time ago and now and again I go back to read it to help me remember what life can be like for someone living with dementia and it helps me to ensure I provide the best possible care to them because that can make all the difference.
#Dementia awareness – If you do anything in the month of September. Help someone remember x
Help me remember me
Daisy Wells Aug 13, 2007
I wake up and see a stranger looking at me
Yet she knows my name, how can that be?
She chatters away while I try to think
Why she’s touching my clothes and filling the sink?
I put on a smile and embrace her small talk
I’m glad someone’s here I’m having trouble to walk
As I look around I see nothing I know
I just feel so lost beaten and low
When I start to cry she says ” what’s the matter? ”
“I don’t know” I reply, “am I mad as a hatter?
“Who are you? where am I? where’s my Jim?
What are you doing here instead of him?”
A thousand questions pass my mouth
Your here she says because of your health
This is a care home, you live here now
Why, when, where, how?
She begins to undress me and cover me with powder
As she instructs me, her voice gets angry and louder
She’s losing her patients as I struggle to comprehend
I know now this illness, tablets can’t mend
I’m ready now walking to breakfast slowly but sure
I see a dozen new faces as I walk in the door
Faces of strangers, none of them I know who
Please god what’s happening give me a clue
Yesterday I was happy at home and busy
Today I am broken, confused and dizzy
Why can’t I remember present nor past
Is this just temporary or will forever last?
The day goes by with strangers a new
I’m frightened as I realize I’m a stranger too
They say my family have come, a smile on my face
Maybe they’ve come to get me out of this place
No such luck as I watch them leave
The smile fades and again I grieve
For a past lost and a future I cannot see
I ask again god, please help me remember me!