This is dementia. It's not just a memory problem.
What you read in this blog is purely my own personal experience in dealing with Lewy Body Dementia every day.

This is not meant to offer any medical or legal advise.
I have no professional training in care giving or experiences in formal writing.
I'm just a woman that loves her husband deeply and wants to provide him with the best quality of life he can and chooses to have.
My prayer though this is "Lord, What am I learning from this; how can I use it help someone else and to glorify You?"
If just one person finds comfort in this public blog. I will feel like it was a success.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

***Time in a Bottle***

Still dancing with the V.A. after a week and still no closer to getting out home health care renewal approved.

Asked family to make a milk run for us and was successful at that.
Had an unexpected and glorious surprise visit from oldest daughter one day she happily ran an errand for us and a Dr appointment had us in town on another day, so a dash into the store for catfood was able to be made.
God's timing is always perfect.

Not having our HHA has placed me back into the role of tending to Hubby's bathing.
Not really an issue. I stepped aside for the HHA to relieve some of my caregiving duties.
Hubby also works easier with HHA and doesn't put her off in the task as easily as he tries to with me.
I think he realizes that HHA is only here for certain lengths of time and he must take care of bathing while he can, unlike me, I'm always here so he can postpone, and does or tries to.

We gave up tub bathing/showering a long time ago.
Hubby had a difficult time getting in and out of the tub even with assistance.
We opted to bed/sink bathe for his ease and it has worked out quite well.
He can sit on the portable toilet chair that has hand rails attached. He doesn't feel like he will slide off. Also the chair can be raised to a better height for Hubby so he doesn't have to sit down as far and struggle to rise.
This has been a good arrangement for us all.

So this is the part that warrants the, Maybe TMI, Title Stars

Respite had been wonderful.
I feel so much more peaceful.
Hubby has suffered no ill side effects from his stay. He is still as confused as ever, still sleeps a LOT, still orders me to do things, still says "Huh?", still accuses and suspects.
Hubby didn't get to escape, even for a short time, from Lewy Body Dementia.
Nothing changed for Hubby in the Lewy life.

The change was in me.
I noticed it a lot right from the reunion.
I noticed it most strongly as I was tending to bathing with Hubby.

I turned on the bathroom heater and made sure the water temp was warm yet comfortable.
I had my cloths and towels placed on Hubby to keep him from getting a chill as I washed him.
The procedure started out as ordinary and robotic.
I washed his hair and his neck and as I held his face in my hand to wash it, time slowed down.
It was if I had stepped out of regular time for a moment and looked at Hubby.
Hubby closed his eyes as I gently stroked his eye lids and cheeks with my hands.
I watched him intently as I slowly glided the cloth across his brow, down his temple, around his ear and down his neck. My hand rubbed against his beard stubble and the sound seemed amplified as if I could hear each hair rising and falling.
All the while gently cupping the other side of his face in my other hand with my thumb on his cheek.

The moment was so slow and I was overtaken by an emotion of pure pleasure.
Satisfied that I was there and blessed to be able to do that for him.
Hubby never opened his eyes as I rinsed out the cloth and proceeded to repeat the other side of his face.

I was looking at Hubby, really looking at Hubby and not seeing Lewy.
I felt so deeply in love at the moment it was almost overwhelming.
I desired my husband and the life we wanted together when we married.

Then another feeling, one of sadness, one that crept in and whispered, This is a goodbye.

But that is what dementia is.
It is a goodbye, every day, to something.

I finished washing Hubby's face in the very slow matrix kind of moment and as if a switch had been thrown, things were back to the norm.

I finished Hubby's bathing, I soaked and scrubbed his nails and feet, applied lotion and assisted with dressing.
We played barbershop and Hubby paid me with a kiss.


  1. What a sweet memory. I keep trying to comment so you know I am lurking. I'm having trouble with that.
    Linda Shumaker

  2. The goodbyes can be where we grow the most and understand the real purpose of life. You are blessed.


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