Journey Through Dementia

Journey Through Dementia

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Loss of Emotions

I wemt to Atria and found my mother sitting out by the Dining Room.  She asked her usual question--what I'd been doing that was exciting.  I told her I was trying to arrange a luncheon for several girls from my grammar school days.  She wsa non responsive.  I don't think she knew who I was talking about. All she said was "I'll have to see how I feel.  I don't feel well today."  She was relieved when I told her she was not invited, so she didn't have to worry. 

Then I told her about the sad news about her friend Jeff, from whom I received an email today,  She used to work with Jeff at Hospice of Marin and though she seems to have no memory of her female friends there, when I mentioned hearing from Jeff a few weeks ago, she instantly brightened and said of course she remembers Jeff and that the two of them had great fun together.

But today I learned that he has been diagnosed with liver cancer and is about to undergo chemotherapy. He would like to see my mother and I told him when he was up to it either we could go there, or he could come up here, whichever worked best for him

I told her what I had learned and she didn't remember him.  When I gave her enough information she said oh yes, she remembered, but I'm not convinced that she did.  And the news of his cancer elicited the response "Well, life goes on..."  It bothers me so much that she has lost her ability to feel any emotional response to news, good or bad.

She really didn't feel well today. She said all her insides feel like they are shaking and when I left her to try to find some of the non-existent coffee that Atria never has any more, I came back to find her bent over with her head in her hands. Not knowing where she is or what she is supposed to be doing (which has been her daily problem for the past three years) is driving her crazy, and I just don't know how to help her.  She can't remember an explanation of where she is and if you give her a chore to do, she doesn't want to do it, she just sits there wondering what she is supposed to do.

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