Can I make a suggestion to all seniors?

Please learn to do something new. NOW! DON'T WAIT! Learn a new game on the computer. ("Eight down solitaire" is great and takes a lot of thinking. ) Learn a new language. Try a new recipe. Start reconciling the bank statement. Don't give this chore to your spouse. Do it together. Pay the bills together. Why am I telling you this?

On Dec. 24, Christmas eve, my precious husband passed away from dementia.
He hated paying bills or using the check register and would procrastinate until I got annoyed and did these myself. I made the phone calls, the doctor appointments and so on. I made it too easy for him. I BELIEVE THIS IS WHY HE GOT DEMENTIA. He wasn't using his brain. Please , please, it can't hurt to do these things....even if I'm wrong about the reason.

I've used this site for many months before my Paul passed away. Dementia is dreadful and too many of us know it. I want you and your loved ones to be well.

God bless you all.

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Thank you Corinne for the prayers. How sweet of you. It scares the day lights out of me to know my chances are great because of family history. But one of my cousins says she doesn't worry about it, if it happens it happens. Her mom and my dad were sibs and both had Alz. It was their fate and if we get it, it'll be our burden to bear. Again, it just warms my heart to know I'm in someone's prayer jar!:-)

AlwaysMyDuty, thank you for your dear comment. I'm going to add your name in my prayer jar hoping that you never have to know ALZ or any other dementia. A dear friend gave me that idea. Since I can't remember everone's name that I want to pray for, I write the name on a small piece of paper and add it to this huge jar. Then I ask God to keep that person well etc. Please take the best care of yourself, too. I think dementia and cancer seem to be so so common. We've got to wipe them out! Blessings, hugs, and love. Corinne

Corinne, you are a sweetheart. I'm so sorry for the loss of your dear husband. God bless you as you take one day at a time during your healing period.
Your suggestion about keeping mentally active sure can't hurt. A busy person is usually a happier person.
Unfortunately, Alz is rampant in my father's family. His mom, 3 of his sibs and he died of this horrid disease, also many of their cousins. Nobody can convince me it's not in our family's genes. I have 20 first cousins and we discuss this at family gatherings. We stay active, mentally and physically and just hope it doesn't attack us. Nobody has any guarantees in life, we pretty much have to take it as it comes.
I wish you the best on this, your new journey. May you receive lots of love and support.

Thanks for your comments Emily and Jeanne. I feel absolutely no guilt. I know I did everything I could to make his life as full as possible. I had a new house built on one floor to get away from the split level one we'd had forever. I had the door made wider, no steps but a ramp put into the laundry room to garage, grab bars everywhere I suspected they were needed, bought a Power Chair (scooter) for him and a specially equipped van so he could drive the chair into it and be safe.
I didn't care if I used every penny we had. Paul had started with walking problems.
I still don't know if this was related to the dementia. The symptoms of dementia started much later than the walking problems. I did the best I could and have no regrets. When he told me he knew he was dying, it broke my heart; but I told him
"You are wonderful. You are doing the best you can. I'm doing the best I can, too; and we're going to be all right." I told him never to worry about me. It's painful; but I know I have to be all right for our children's sake. Love and many hugs, Corinne

Hi Connie
I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your husband. I am touched by your kindness and concern for others. Thanks so much for sharing. Do take care. Hugs to you, Corinne!


I am so sorry for your loss. My husband died of dementia about a month before Paul did.

It is kind of you to take the time to write your suggestion for others.

Nobody yet knows why some people get dementia and others do not. There is high-powered research going on all over the world to try to identify causes and therefore be able to work on prevention.

You are right. It can't hurt to try new things and keep our brains active. Many researchers feel that this can create new pathways in the brain. If you do develop dementia then having more pathways means it will take the disease longer to destroy them and you may function normally or in very mild stages longer. My husband's behavioral neurologist, an internationally respected researcher, felt that at least with Lewy Body Dementia it was possible to continue building new pathways even after the onset of dementia, and he was always encouraging us to take trips and go to concerts, etc. to keep the mind active.

My husband was a mechanical engineer, and kept mentally active right up to the onset of dementia and beyond that. But he still got dementia. One loved one in my support group was an active (not yet retired) architect. Another person I know was struck with dementia in spite of very actively using his brain as a computer programmer. Keeping our brains active and learning is a good thing, but it is no guarantee that we won't develop dementia. I hope you are not feeling guilty or responsible for "making it too easy for him." Grieving is hard enough without adding guilt about the what-ifs.

Hugs to you, Corinne.

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