Friday, July 12, 2013

In Grandmother’s Alzheimer’s, Another Lesson in Family


Alzheimer’s is an insidious disease. It is hard to explain to others, especially to people my own age, because we are visual people, and the dementia’s destruction can’t always be seen physically.


When we arrived that Friday evening, I told my mother to stay in the car while I tried to persuade Grandma to come off the bus. I silently prayed that when my grandmother saw my face, her mood would change.

Alzheimer’s has stolen her recollection of the people closest to her, but the face she always seems to remember is my father’s. His olive complexion, deep brown eyes and wide grin bear a striking resemblance to Grandma’s brother, Joe, who died at the age of 43, decades ago. She will often refer to my father as her brother, but will always call him by his name, Jimmy. I look similar to my father, so I was hoping this would play to my advantage.

Continue reading this wonderful story in the New York Times

To learn more about Alzheimer's and Dementia visit the Alzheimer's Reading Room.