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I am caring for my 91 yr old grandmother. watching her decline has been extremely difficult and my 5 yr old seeing all this... does anyone have experience with this?

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Shorty, love your post. I learned that they use a "different" part of their brain when listening to music and I also use it with my Mother. When we sing "Dashing thru the Snow" her hands and feet start going after the 2nd or 3rd round, its like the awakening! She loves it. She leans her head towards me or my son, or husband wanting comfort also and I call her my sweetie, hummybun, cutiepie, you name it , I call her it. God Bless you too.
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I found that my husband benefited greatly from hearing music...it was a comfort for him. I also read light poetry to him and he would sit with his eyes closed and finally nod off. I would hold him and tell him he was my sweetheart and he would lay his head on me so I knew it was a comfort for him. I prayed constantly for strength for both of us. God Bless.
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Karen, your 5 year old is going to feel how you do and pick up on your every vibe. If you think its wonderful to be taking care of your grandmother that will reflect on your child. Just yesterday I needed to babysit my 2 and 3 year old grandchildren and I had them help me to pump the hoyer lift with my 91 year old Mom with late stage dementia/alz into her recliner. (Of course I was doing most of the work but they think they were) They then pushed the buttons on her recliner to lay her back and put a blanket on her. It was priceless, I took pictures. Once into the other room I told them again how proud I was of them and explained that their great-grandma is very old. etc. We then went on to painting sun catchers , kids are resilient.They visit at least weekly and run in to say hello to her yet my Mom cannot see them, speak nor understand that they are even in the room. Think and talk positively and your child will admire you and learn to love and care for people.
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Thank you, yes my gram can be difficult. im dealing with her having falls, eating everything that affects her diabetes, or not eating. its been rough.
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yes i have with my boyfriend's mother, who has lewey dementia, i have noticed a big decline in the last 6 months, with here husband in the hospital for the last 10 months my family has under gone big changes in our lives. it is not easy caring for someone with this illness it is heart beaking and a challenage, as every day it is something new. getting her to dresss take a shower or eat are the biggest battles, here mental age right now is betweern 5 and 7 years old (shes 79) and they can be very combative. i know and here what everyone says but each person is differant and i don't think there is just one set of rules. we do have out good days, but those are few and far between, your life is no longer your own, and i believe all of us need help so we can have a life also. prayers every day to make it thru another day. wishing you the best
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I have been caring for my husband since 2007 when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and has progressed quite rapidly. I enrolled him in day care 4 days a wk and it helped tremendously. If you search in your community you might find a source that is very reseaonable and is very caring those facilities are out there. I was lucky. My husband is now in assisted Alzheimer's care right now. It was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make. We have never been apart for 48 yrs. I am still not sure it was the right decision although some people close to me say it was. It is just so hard. I cry every day, every night and all the in-between . There are times I just ask myself who am I without him? Right now my answer is nothing but I am hoping that will change and I can find my new idenity with happy memories of what we once had. It is so so hard. I pray every night for him and also for me to find my way without him.
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I go to a customers house to cut her hair that is in final stages of Alz. I witnessed her slow decline... then to house bound...now basically bed bound. Her daughter is an awesome person and made a healthcare plan at first sign of her Mom's health issues. This happened to be how she met her husband, while setting up a home for a mother daughter situation. Her Mom at that time was high functioning just needed some assistance. Then the daughter had a son.... now 6 years later, I would swear that, little boy is why the Grandma is still going, like a Timex watch, her daughters constant care, plus her grandsons attention. To everyone else she must seem like there is "no one home" but I know there is some light in her because when I cut her hair I get the sense she is enjoying the grooming and soothing feeling of combing her hair. It may seem far fetched by a smile and a gentle touch and a bit of attention in a loving way may make a person overcome most battles in health. Use what you know makes her happy and comfy. Your five year old will learn the most important part of life from this experience. Tink60 I think your adult son should try taliking to her about her life even if it is a past before his time he may learn a lot more about her life and a bit of the Gram he knew may resurface. Do you have pictures that he can show her to ask her who's who in them and music is always a blessing.
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I care for my mother, Katie, 82, and grandmother to my 7 year old. Katie has mild to moderate ALZ, and I find activities my mother can do with my 7 year old on a regular basis. Katie will work puzzles with DD. I get the 8+ puzzles because they are easy for Katie, and challenging for DD. For a 5 YO I would start with 6+ puzzles. I encourage Katie to read to DD. She now reads Chapter books to her on a regular basis. Likewise, DD now reads to her. It really is special time for the both of them.

I handle Katie with the utmost patience, and I find that my children do the same. It has been two years that we all live together, and my DD has accepted her grandmother the way she is. There is still bonding. Katie feels a great sense of being needed with her granddaughter so near. She often "puts her to bed" by going through the bedtime ritual, often with my DD telling her what is next.

It is all rather endearing. Try to find the small gratitudes and focus on the small life events that have a big impact on the young and the old alike. It is our "new normal" way in the household.

On the other hand, my adult son had the most precious of relationships with his grandmother. He has experienced her decline. I have talked him through how to communicate and interact with Katie. He did mourn the loss of their relationship, and although he relates to her on a nurturing level, he misses the days when they had fun together like going to visit grandma.
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