Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Alzheimer's Steals History

My mother has Alzheimer's and is now living with us.  It's so sad to watch her memory deteriorate.  It's not just that she has trouble with short-term memory, she is forgetting our history.  I can't say to her, Hey mom, remember when...  Because she doesn't.  She remembers way back when she was a young girl, which I understand is typical of this disease.  Their long-term memory is intact for a long time.  It's the latter thing to go.  But she doesn't remember my childhood.  Or people we knew and loved during my lifetime.  She asks me if I remember when her daddy did this and that.  Well, her dad died before I was born.  So, No, I don't remember him doing any of those things.  Our conversations are related to something happening on TV or the weather, or something our dogs did that was cute.  But nothing about our history.  It's very sad.
What do you think?  Lets talk about it.

1 comment:

  1. You have my admiration. The job you've taken on is perhaps the least enviable job I can imagine. The more I read about what we're learning in terms of how our brains work, the more amazed I am that we can function at all. We still have much to learn and we have some amazingly intelligent people working on these kinds of problems. Science is the answer and the more resources we dedicate to the research, including science education from early grade school on up, the better off we'll be. Anything that detracts us from scientific research in neuroscience, is counter-productive.

    In California, budget concerns has prompted our Governor (whom I voted for) to recommend lowering our high school science requirements from 2 years to 1. That, in my opinion, is moving in the wrong direction. We should be requiring 3 or 4 years. This perceived de-prioritization of science education is deeply troubling.