Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I'm Walkin' Here!

I'll be joining the Alzheimer's Memory Walk at South Cove Park on October 25th.

Mom & Dad always wanted to retire to the Smokey Mountains. Both my parents have lived all their lives within 20 miles of where they were born. In recent years they vacationed almost exclusively in a little town called Townsend, near Gatlinburg. They love it there, the scenery, the people, everything about it.

Just before Dad retired a few years ago
Mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer's Disease. Actually she was misdiagnosed. What she has is Cerebral Vascular Dementia, caused by a hardening or blockage of the artery in the brain. The symptoms are similar and there is no cure for CVD either.

Mom & Dad did move to the Smokey Mountains about 3 years ago. On her good days she knows her friends and where she lives, how many and who her children are. How to dress and feed herself. But it's not a 24 hour good day. It's more like 3 minutes here and 3 minutes there. Mom is happy every day though. Everything is new to her almost every day. She looks up at the sky and clouds and marvels at the mountains and in her good moments she remarks that it's beautiful and she can't believe she lives there. Dad is taking care of her at home for now. We got her an I.D. bracelet with her name & address on it along with Dad's and my cell phone numbers, incase she wanders off (which is not so much a symtom of Vascular Dementia and has not been a problem). He has looked into and toured several facilities that can take Mom on a Day Care basis and eventually full time. His biggest fear is that when he does have to admitt her to one of these facilities, he won't be there for her when she has her good moments.

So I walk for Alzheimer's. Won't you join my team? Or start your own team and find a walk near you! Or be a wimp and just Donate Online! I'd appreciate it and I know many others will too.