Thursday, July 27, 2017

Journey to Save my Memory

In Shakespeare's Hamlet, Ophelia says, "There's rosemary, that's for remembering"

(NaturalHealth365) An estimated 5.3 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease, most of them adults aged 65 and older. With the continued aging of the population, the number suffering from Alzheimer’s is expected to climb to 7.1 million by 2025.

Anyone close to me knows that I have been complaining for at least a year now about my memory loss.  Most people react with euphemisms like, "Oh, yeah, I got that too. I walk into a room and don't remember why I went there" And I just smile at most of them.  The don't understand.

My Aunt Janice was married to the youngest of my father's brothers, my Uncle Frank, who was the first in the family to die of Alzheimer's.  Then the middle brother, and finally my father.

Aunt Janice told me, "People think it's like losing your car keys, when it's really like forgetting what to do with your car keys."

It's also like driving down to the end of your road and forgetting which way you turn, after living on the same road for 30 years.

Or it's like knowing which way to turn another day, and after driving a mile or two not recognizing any of your surroundings.  You are lost.  At least for a few seconds. And then it hits you.  You are okay. You know where you are.

You write everything, especially the doctor appointments, on the many calendars in your house, and also in your personal planner that goes everywhere with you, but you are confused and don't look at your calendars or your planner, which is lying next to you on your night stand.  Later in the day you realize you missed your son's appointment, the one you had to wait two months to get.

And you cry.  You feel so guilty.  And people say, "Oh, it's okay.  I forget things all the time."

I remember the last time I saw my father alive.  He was in the hospital, a respite for my brother and sister-in-law who were taking care of  him.  I remember wondering how my father felt as I sat next to his bed watching him stare at the corner of the room while he squeezed a rubber ball someone gave him.

He was beyond having any words. His eyes spoke for him. He was tuning out the world, including me, his oldest child. How did he actually "feel?"  Did he feel anything, was he sad, did he hate staying in that bed in a fetal position all day squeezing a rubber ball?

I also remember when he still knew who I was, when he was scared about what was happening to him.  My mother had died several years before. My father was scared, afraid of what was to come.  I remember that.

I know what is working on me, little by little. At first you don't recognize it so much. Later, though, it goes faster.  You realize it every day.

One friend about a year ago said, "Oh, you don't know you have Alzheimer's. Everybody else can see it."

That is so not true. You do know.

And, I guess because I do know it, I have a chance to do something about it.

Some days I forget how to use my laptop,  but recently I've  been trying to tame it, like a wild horse that keeps going where you don't want it to go.  Today I bit the bullet and decided I WOULD write about the research I've  been doing, and how I was fighting back.

First off, I now know why I got these essential oils. I thought I was just getting them for Jeff, my autistic Down syndrome wonderful boy (man actually). Because I'd heard about how these oils could help with symptoms of autism, and our boy sure had symptoms.  And, yes, I've at least been able to bring him down a notch or two when he is breathing out his nose like a dragon or slamming his bedroom door.

Now he asks me to oil him every day.

So today I made a blend of three of my oils: Peppermint, Lavender, and Rosemary, supposed to be a good blend for memory loss.

And Drinking Green Tea, made from the dried leaves of Camellia sinensis, a perennial evergreen shrub.  
 It contains several compounds that are possibly beneficial to brain health, including coffee...and L-theanine (an amino acid derivative). Several observational studies and clinical trials suggest that green tea consumption might promote cognitive function, but no studies have tested whether it can prevent dementia. -- Green Tea & Your Brain/Cognitive Vitality/Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation.

I have some more research, including medicine doctors use, a few that might not have too many side effects.  I wanted to be prepared for my next neurology appointment in October.  

Also I've been taking some other natural supplements and will talk about them next post in a couple of days.

I hope I can help anybody else out there who's dealing with this.  Maybe some of you also have your own tips.  Love to hear them! 


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