Stories

The stories on these pages are from people affected by dementia.

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A Lady with dementia needs her morning medication

I made my way, with breakfast tray without much hesitation

A cup of tea, a piece of toast one tablet to be swallowed

There was a kind of sameness as the conversation followed 

She asks me every morning why she needs this medication,

Diagnosis:
Grace Edwards was born 4/2/1927, she was diagnosed with dementia at Casey Hospital October 2007 after an operation at Dandenong Hospital to remove gallstones, gallbladder and repair a hernia. It was previously a gradual diminution of memory over several years. She was medicated for low level depression.

Stage1:
On recommendation of our doctor we received 1 hour/ week home help and 1 hour/week social visit.

Stage 2:
Upgraded to Villa Maria early 2007

MY DAD

The old man sits there, Looking like he used to

A man drowsy from sleep, With a smile so deep.

Who is this man? Once so full of life

Now silent and withdrawn, Unaware of life with his wife.

Who is this man? That sits quietly in his chair?

With a twinkle in his eye, Reminding me with his stare.

Who is this man? Who used to sit me on his knee,

And called me “Blossom” But now no longer knows me.

This old man is my Dad, He is not the man I once knew

My partner Chris was diagnosed at age 56 with Younger Onset Dementia.

Prior to his diagnosis he was a successful and articulate teacher. However, when his employer recognised that something was wrong and suggested that he see his doctor, our lives changed dramatically.

I first married in 1951, to Kathleen, my wife for nearly 40 years. We had a delightful first 30 years approx. when little (!) oddities started to occur. Particularly memorable are an incident when she attempted to park the car in an impossibly narrow space, with resultant considerable damage to our and adjoining cars.

Then she was charged with shoplifting, found guilty and fined – but conditional upon psychiatric assessment. No need to steal; we were financially secure, and I kept an ample supply of the stolen item (gin!) in the house. I was not informed of any diagnosis.

It was quite a conversation she was having with her cat,

Her beaming smile infectious it was on her bed she sat

The purring of the kitten filled the lady’s heart with joy

An intermittent "meow" was heard a friendship to enjoy

The whitest cat with tabby spots the softest feline fur

2004, in Perth, saw Judy disturbed by her inability to remember where items had been placed in our three-storey town-house. 

Throughout the year, several doctors told her it was just a sign of old age in a person born in 1930. Judy had never been concerned about her mental health but the continued memory loss prompted consultations with a psychiatrist throughout 2005.