May 5, 2017
Dementia SUCKS. There are no “if’s,” “and’s,” or “but’s” about it. It just plain SUCKS. It’s a thief - a sneaky, cruel, conniving, vicious thief that not only steals the lives and memories and minds of it’s victims, but it also robs husbands of their wives, wives of their husbands, children of their mothers and fathers, sisters of brothers, and brothers of sisters, and on and on it goes.
There is no rhyme nor reason to it’s destructive path. There is not even a true predictor as to whom will become it's next victim. Dementia is a death sentence, although not an immediate one. It makes it's victims linger in an unknown state of confusion - sometimes for years. Loved ones are forced to watch the gradual decline and disappearance of those whom they have held dear until the person is nothing like they have known and loved. It completely makes NO sense. It segregates. It alienates. It isolates. It confuses. It hinders. It changes. It takes the common, everyday way of life and turns it upside down. It makes the familiar strange, the known unknown, and the easy difficult. And just like death, dementia is no respecter of persons. It doesn’t care who it claims. It doesn’t discriminate by gender, race, religion, origin, or any other type of politically correct difference. It takes whom it wishes and leaves disaster in it's wake. It leaves it’s victims locked deep inside their own minds. So far so, that they can’t recover from it. So yes, Dementia SUCKS.
It causes every day tasks to become monumental obstacles. It causes personalities to change as drastically as complete opposite; so sometimes those who were once meek and mild can become violent and cursing at every breath or vice versa. It causes it’s victims to lose control of their own body. Motor skills diminish, vision changes by way of depth perception and hallucinations. It even causes the loss of speech and the loss of control of one’s own bladder and bowel functions. It takes the victim from a functional adult, down to smaller than a little child. It changes the familial roles sometimes. It makes it necessary for children to become the caretakers of the parents whom they always looked to for guidance and support. And sometimes it requires support and care from professionals, outside the home to make sure the victims are properly cared for. It even causes it's victims to not be able to realize that they are in pain or to communicate that they’re in pain or discomfort. So, yes, Dementia SUCKS.
It causes loved ones to watch as their parent, spouse, sibling, etc., slowly slips away. To look into the eyes that were once vibrant and full of life and realize that the light is on but there is no one at home any more. It makes you have conversations with your loved one that make absolutely no sense to most people. It causes you to learn not to be completely reactionary when something comes up out of the ordinary or something necessary within the house goes missing. It causes you to reevaluate the things you once thought as most important - because when you have a stretch of good days, where things seem at least partly whole instead of crumbling all around - that’s huge and a tremendous blessing. It teaches you patience, because for whatever reason, certain voice tones and facial expressions can set a dementia patient off. So you learn to be patient and try to take everything in a smooth, calm manner. It teaches you to rejoice on the good days and to find something to laugh about on the not so good days (which eventually becomes the norm) because if you don’t, you will lose your own mind. It causes you to question why things like this happen, even though there is a purpose to everything that God give us and puts in our path, it still causes the questioning. It causes pain and anguish, not only to the person suffering with it, but also to those closest to them. So yes, Dementia SUCKS.
Like many diseases we are faced with in this life, it sucks the life right out of it’s victims. I don’t know that any one disease is worse than another. All of them are horrible. But I think this one, that dementia is possibly the worst of them all because you completely lose yourself, to not know anything of or from the world you’ve lived in for so many years. To be scared and confused because you can’t understand what’s happening around you. To lose knowledge of who your loved ones are. To become just a body with a beating heart - a shell of the person that once was. To me, this seems horrendous.
So, yes, Dementia SUCKS. This evil, conniving, vicious thief, absolutely and completely SUCKS.