Wanted: new caregiving skill – mind reading.

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Benjamin Button Effect: What Do You Do When Your Mom Cries Out Like a Baby?.

Being a mind reader would greatly benefit every parent of a newborn baby, and all caregivers of those with Alzheimer’s or other dementia.  The article attached above, by Blogger Kathy Ritchie, is a thoroughly relatable article that is raw in its presentation, but wreaking with truth because of that rawness.

Will Arnett at the premiere of Baby Mama in Ne...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reading Kathy Ritchie’s article I was instantly reminded of a line from the television series, Up All Night, wherein new parents, played by Will Arnett and Christina Applegate, fail miserably in their efforts to get their infant daughter Amy to fall asleep and stay asleep.  They try everything they can think of to address the baby’s distress: diaper changing, giving her a bottle, reading stories, making funny faces – you get the drill.  In desperation, Will Arnett finally says to his infant daughter, “We’re on your side!”

When you can’t force understanding on someone you’re taking care of, you wing it or you pull every trick out of every “How To” book written on this task of caregiving.   Yet more often than not, even with all the resources available at your fingertips, you make little headway in your attempts to meet the emergent needs your loved one presents to you.  Or what works one day (or hour) may not work the next day.  Why?  Because Alzheimer’s and other dementias are very unpredictable diseases; and people with dementia are unique individuals, equally as unpredictable.  There is no one formula for how to respond to any given situation.

As Kathy states in her article, “You have to work very hard to find the funny.”  I think many of us, given the choice, would settle for finding all the right answers and do without finding the funny – but the funny incidents are a great addition to ones day.

Caregivers of the world – you are not alone and if you need someone to tell you what a great job you’re doing, I’m telling you right now – YOU’RE DOING A GREAT JOB!!!

Your journey is filled with speed bumps and ruts in the road, but you continue on that path anyway because of your commitment to your loved ones.  After all, they had no choice in the matter when they ended up with Alzheimer’s or other dementia.  You’re both innocent victims.

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