So Christmas for me in 2014 was spent mostly in bed; I had a bout of salmonella, not fun at all. I didn’t get to put up most decorations (this is a photo of a Christmas past). I didn’t get to sing or lead music with small and large groups, which I’ve done for many years. Was I sad? A little. But I’ve also been around for 46 Christmases so far, and I drew upon Christmases past to cheer me up. I looked at pictures, read stories, and sang a few songs from my bedroom. It worked to bring the spirit of Christmas to our home and hearts. We also instituted a ‘ring the key chime, open a present’ tradition so we could gather some moments of joy whenever we needed one.
The one trip I’ve made out of the house was to the hairdresser. A good haircut goes a long way. She shared about a friend’s 4-year-old son who asked, “Mom, how many Christmases have I been around for?” Mom: “Well, you’re four now, so….four.” “I only remember 2, so I don’t believe you.” She showed him pictures and tried to prove that he’d indeed seen 4 holiday seasons thus far. It remains to be seen if he will believe her, but nevertheless, he’s been celebrated thoroughly. When someone with dementia doesn’t believe you’ve done what you’ve done, try to realize that you have done good things, and that celebrating from bed can be ok.
Take care, and stay in touch,
Tryn Rose Seley,
Author, 15 Minutes of Fame: One Photo Does Wonders To Bring You Both Back to Solid Ground at www.caregiverheart.com
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