Meeting Alzheimer

30 Apr

I thought of sharing a idea I had to myself, for my own doing, inside a restricted context.

Well, not exactly I met the German psychiatrist. But an old lady of my friendship circle has got the disease and is in its first level. All her friends disappeared with the time being and her family has almost everybody passed away.

Because I’ve got a quite flexible work schedule and I’ve got some free afternoons, I thought spending a afternoon with her would be a great time for me listening her stories and sharing some of our common interests.

In the first meeting we discovered that back in her healthy days she was a literature freak, and a great critic – she has also been a book reviewer a bunch of years ago. And her past memory is as fresh as the age permits. Because I studied literature at university, I we talked two hours away and her recurrent question was: what do people do for literature nowadays?

Woodward’s History of Wales is shown open to t...

Woodward’s History of Wales is shown open to the title page. It’s propped up by an old Latin-English dictionary. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We decided keep meeting once a week, one afternoon for reading and discussing some literature and current issues – and she named me her “window to world” – what made really happy.

We met twice afterwards and last meeting she was so glad, because she kept reading a book we started later and could recover a bit of the story when I returned – although only key happenings. Despite she’d read the book before her AD, I thought it was something remarkable. I then, thought of reading short stories and poetry for next meeting, so we can discuss each one the day we read, with a bit of a hope that she recalled the story at the end – unfortunately her present memory is quite short and I need to make a short summary of what we read quite often.

It occurred me doing two things today:

1) recording our meeting and burning her a cd with her telling me her impressions about our readings (that are quite interesting and teaches me a lot), so she will hear herself telling about her likings.

2) take notes of our summaries and publish some of them, here or in another place.

That is it. We cannot reverse the flow of AD, or recover her memory. But we can enjoy some hours of our week talking about things we like, here and now!

Have a nice week!

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