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My mom has been living in a memory care facility for a year. She is about at stage 6, mobile, but unable to function independently at all. Of course there are many residents there who are much more advanced in the disease than she is. I am basically her only visitor, once or twice a week, because my brother lives far away and I've had to move her away from her friends so she could be closer to me. And I work full time. She does still know me and she is delighted to see me when I visit. But when I arrive, she is often just sitting. She can't read or do needlework anymore to pass the time. So many residents just sit and don't interact when there is no entertainment or activity at the facility. Does she miss me when I'm not there? What does a day seem like to her? She is not agitated or anxious like many residents. I guess I just need reassurance that she's not missing me terribly when I'm not there. Or maybe she doesn't miss me at all (she never mentions her ex-husband of 20 years who divorced her 2 years ago). I'm grateful she still knows and appreciates me. Are her days long and boring or does she perceive time going by the way we do?

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My Dad is always asking what day it is. He'll ask "Is today Thursday" One of us will tell him, "No, today is Saturday." He'll tell us that's not right, it can't be, but eventually believes us. He stands in front of the calendar and looks at the days, usually trying to find out when he has a doctor's appointment. One day he was talking about having to call his place of work to let them know he wasn't coming in. I told him that he hadn't worked in that particular occupation since he retired in 1973, 40 years ago. He said that wasn't possible and asked what year it was. I told him 2013. He couldn't believe that 40 years had gone by. He also worries about what time it is, and says the clocks aren't on the right time!
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My grandmother has Alzheimer's and it gets progressively worse. At first, they really need for someone to be there that they know and feel upset when no one is. Later, it is a more "in the moment" sort of thing. By that, I mean you might walk in the room after being gone for an hour and they will take up the conversation you were having as if you never left. Likewise, go to the bathroom for 5 minutes and they will say you've been gone for days. When you are there, they are in the moment with you and enjoy your company but short term memory is lost and it doesn't hold. On the other hand, she can go into detail about her childhood and mine too! Don't worry about it. As long as she has familiar faces around her and people who treat her kindly, she should be okay. In my case, my grandmother moved in with us.
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Carol's article is indeed helpful.

Since persons with mid-to-late stage dementia are usually not able to articulate clearly what they are experiencing and feeling, it is really hard to know what a day is like in their experience. I think we just have their behavior as a clue. Have you asked the staff how she seems on the days when you are not there?

My mother seems to have lost all sense of time. When she asks for a cup of tea she wants to know where it is even before I've gotten the water in the kettle. Those few moments must feel like a long time to her. Other times she'll talk about when so-and-so visited yesterday when in fact that person hasn't been around for a few weeks. Those weeks are collapsed into a day in her memory.

I know that my mother likes getting phone calls and letters. But with the calls it is that she enjoys them at the time they are occurring. It doesn't seem to be the case that she savors them the rest of the day or thinks before going to bed, "It was really nice today to hear from 2 of my kids and to get a letter."

If your mother enjoys having you visit when you are there that may be the most you can know. Enjoy it!
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The article by Carol Bradley Bursack on this site is excellent.
https://www.agingcare.com/articles/Stages-of-Alzheimers-disease-118964.htm
I do not have any experience with the disease. Hopefully others will respond with hands on experience. Good Luck
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