Billie Jean & Bear
Included are the initial symptoms of Alzheimer’s as observed by family members and friends. The chapter progresses with the actions taken in the actual diagnosis of the disease; the elimination of the patients freedoms as the disease worsened; the search for in-home care; the actions of the caregiver as the disease required more of his time at home; looking for an out-of-home care facility; and finally the choosing of an out-of-home facility including moving the patient into the facility. The chapter ends with the strong admonishment to family members to visit their loved one often and to include paying attention to other residents of the facility.
There is a dependency on religion presented as the author tells of some of his life experiences which helped him remain dedicated to caring for his wife as well as himself while coping with such a great adversity. The author tells of caring for an alcoholic son, the benefits of a loving family and friends and the therapy he received from having a loving pet. The chapter ends with the recognition we all have to follow Harold Kushner’s advice and stop praying “God, why me?” when adversity hits our lives and instead ask, “God, what do I do now?”
This chapter presents how positive thinking can help to relieve worry and bring a person to being a “can do” individual instead of a “can’t do” individual. Presented are some of the actions some people need to perform to become a positive thinker. Some key points recorded in this chapter are each person is a unique individual with different strengths and weaknesses; each of us needs to understand “we are what we think we are!”; “Youth is not only a time of life it is a state of mind!”.
Each of us has different responsibilities, obligations, and possessions. Each of us equally have to protect these by insuring we obtain and keep up to date required legal documents like wills, living wills and power’s-of-attorney. These along with certain administrative types of information and a home inventory are required to assure our wishes will be handled as well as reducing the burdens on our family when some severe adversity strikes us personally. Each of these needs is covered in this chapter.
Presented here are several of the actions the author and his wife took to insure they would have a financially happy retirement after raising three children. An admonishment is given particularly to younger and middle-aged folks to set their later life goals and begin to practice delayed gratification by saving to meet those goals instead of conducting frivolous, un-needed, instant gratification spending early in their lives. How to practice delayed gratification and grow your assets is covered. Particularly important is the author’s need to change the goal he and his wife had for their retirement years to a goal of caring for his wife utilizing the assets they had saved for the original goal. Also covered are some pointers on obtaining certain types of insurance particularly long term care insurance to protect your saved assets when a family member is stricken with a crippling disease like Alzheimer’s requiring in-home or out-of-home care.
We all need to stay active (“you gotta keep doing so you can keep doing”); have trusted close friends and maintain a healthy body through proper diet and exercise. This chapter presents ways to achieve the proper weight and the properly conditioned body. These are needed to stay healthy as a caregiver to a loved one so the support we provide will be the best we can possibly give. The Alzheimer’s Association tells all caregivers that caring for themselves first is key and if they do not care for themselves first someone else will soon have two people to care for.