Friday, August 24, 2007


It's hard to believe that next week Brandon will start his orientation for 9th grade. Where does time go?

Courtney was 9 and Brandon was 7 when Mike was diagnosed. They are now 14 and 15. Their entire life has been dealing with Alzheimer's Disease. I will ALWAYS wonder if I did the right thing in keeping Mike at home with us. Did I take too much time and attention away from the kids? Could I have done more, had Mike's 24/7 care not been in my hands? I question this always, but the kids always tell me they would have had it no other way.

We have been so busy around the house this summer, I felt like I haven't seen Mike alot. We have spent many hours in the back and front yard, trying to make our property not only look nice, but REALY nice. We all need something to feel good about. We are also painting Courtney's room (Brandon's was re-done earlier this year). Actually, Courtney has so far done all the priming on her own and I'm VERY proud of her. We have also been blessed to receive a "gift" of carpeting, but before it can be installed, we've had to rip out the existing carpeting. My hands have the bruises and cuts to prove it. It very difficult to remove carpeting from stairs :(

I found out today that our weekend aide will not be in on Sunday and we will have someone else for only 1/2 the time. It's supposed to be Mike's aide from 2 years ago and if he does show up, it will be interesting to see Mike's reaction to him. Because the aide will only be working until 2pm (instead of to 7pm) I will have to care for Mike. Of course it will be difficult because the weekend is the only time I have to do everything, but at the same time, it will be my much needed re-connection with Mike. Since I feel I haven't been spending much time with him these past weeks, it will give me the one on one time I need. I hope he will enjoy it as much as I do.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Summer Update

I am relieved to say that all remains "status quo" with Mike. I recently took a week to do some day trips with the kids. We went to Splish Splash (a water park), into NYC, to the beach, to the movies and lunch and got their uniforms and books and supplies for school. All pretty everyday things, but we all enjoyed this much needed time away. Each time we went somewhere, I would have an overwhleming sense of sadness. Mike should have been there with us. He LOVED the water and the city. It just isn't fair that he could not be a part of our lives doing the things I know he loves. I very rarely say that things are "unfair" because who am I to think I'm above everyone else? Who would this disease be fair to? Exactly. But recently, I have been having a difficult time emotionally. I guess as the kids are getting older, and I see the young adults they have become, my heart aches that Mike does not fully understand. His children were his life and he would have done anything for them. They were his VERY FIRST concern when he was diagnosed. Now here they are in High School, maturing into beautiful, caring human beings, and he cannot appreciate all that they are. I pray that he knows, somehow, how proud he would be of them. They have not let him down, and for that I couldn't be prouder.

We are gearing up for our annual walk in the Alzheimer Association's Memory Walk which will be in Sept. Courtney has recruited a bunch of her friends to walk with us so we can make a bigger statement. We hope to match our goal of $1,000.00.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

That Special Smile

This picture was taken of Mike 2 weeks ago. It was a beautiful sunny Saturday and we decided to take him outside. It's somewhat of a project that requires perfect timing - it has to be in between meals, when he's awake, when it's nice outside (not too hot, not too cold). It was a perfect day and we took advantage. It was evident by his smile that he loved it also.

It's amazing what we all take for granted.

We appreciate EVERY smile we get from him. His smile lights up the room, wherever he may be.

Everyday is a gift that we truly appreciate.