Hello HOTties! I know, I know–you’re all in shock.
First I don’t post for months at a time, then you’re blasted with posts from me within a 12 hour period.
I just wanted to let you know that I’ve been really touched by the comments, both public and private, I’ve received in the past day.
It means a lot.
I also wanted to clarify a few things.
Although it does indeed seem like I and my family may be snake-bitten or jinxed or experiencing a hazy deja-vu of sorts, I don’t believe that to be the case.
Although Jamey and my mom’s situation may be slightly different because they were both diagnosed while relatively young, having more than one family member battling dementia is not uncommon.
Worldwide Alzheimer’s Prevalence
In fact, nearly 50 million people worldwide are estimated to be impacted by some form of dementia.
Research indicates that number is likely to increase markedly–to almost 75 million–by 2030.
These statistics only represent those impacted by dementia(of which there are currently over 100 recognized types–the most common being Alzheimer’s).
These stats don’t include neurological damage due to TBIs–Traumatic Brain Injuries–a common result of an individual experiencing some form of insult to the brain.
Crassly and bluntly put, there’s a ton of people worldwide losing their minds and themselves–literally.
And each one of those people has family and friends who will also be impacted greatly—sometimes even more greatly–than the diagnosed individual him or herself.
So my family experience isn’t really that unusual.
And as we age(groan, but it’s true)and our family and friends age, the likelihood that you’ll find yourself standing in my Manolo Blahniks increases, statistically speaking.
I’m not suggesting this to inject some viral panic, rather to inoculate, in a sense.
What happened to Jamey sucks.
What’s happening to my mom sucks.
What may happen to your husband or mom or grandad some day will equally suck.
One of the only reasons I’m handling this all as well as I am is because Ive entered into this armed for battle.
I have the knowledge of where this is headed.
Sure, it’s still depressing, but having knowledge gives me security; it allows for a modicum of stability in an otherwise unstable and chaotic situation.
Don’t get me wrong–I’m not all rational and pragmatic and logical.
I hurt for my dad.
I hurt for my mom.
I hurt for my siblings, my mom and dad’s siblings, their friends.
I hurt for Caeley.
I really, really hurt for Caeley.
The short and long-lasting impacts that these debilitating diseases have had on all of us have been and will continue to be significant, perhaps life-altering.
But my family’s shared dealt-hand of dementia could’ve seen much more dire endings.
Jamey died in a faciltiy that was as close to home as we could’ve hoped for.
He died peacefully and with family present.
Not everyone has that same end after being diagnosed with cancer.
My mom, too, will die in a facility that is as close to home as possible.
I’m hopeful she will, when the time comes, die as peacefully and surrounded by family as Jamey did.
Not everyone has that same end after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
So yes, it’s terrible and sad and painful that our family is facing this once again so soon after Jamey’s passing.
But–I’ll break tradition and be an optimist here–both final journeys have been blessings; the best send-off that any one of us could have imagined.
So while I appreciate your concerns and thoughts and prayers regarding how difficult this has been–and will continue to be–I also ask that you counter those thoughts or prayers with thanks.
In both cases, we have been lucky or blessed enough to have as wonderful an end to a horrific situation as could have been imagined.