This is a memoir of past learnings and the uphill climb to wherever it leads me. Someday, my children will have time to read this. Perhaps, it will make them smile or really irritated with me for putting these in writing.
I don’t want to forget. It has already started a few months ago, early onset Alzheimer’s. My grandma had it really early, nearly around my current age. I had the opportunity to care for her and it was heartwrenching to see the disease progress. Her moments of clarity became shorter and shorter until she regressed back to 12. She only remembered her hometown, Romblom, where my dad and aunts had never been.
Last year, I had 3 “aha moments.” I have my alarm set at 420pm on weekdays to pick up my daughter from school. Twice, I went blank and drove past the school and had to turn back. Another time, I got confused and went to the wrong place— to 711.
Writing has always been my best ally. It lets me vent and reassess my thoughts. Somehow, reading my woes, helps me restrategize my moves. Oh! I’ve been having some difficulty with spelling lately and to think, I memorized the Webster dictionary between 3-4 years old, my mom’s technique of keeping me away from my older sister’s kindergarten books.
People in my family and those who were touched by this progressive illness understand and the support is there 100%. God knows how grateful I am for my family. They are my backbone. They blame the multiple doses of anaesthesia I got from the series of surgeries I had in 2016.
Well for others, I don’t blame them for not understanding but I won’t linger in their company. They can assume all they want. From firsthand experience, stress causes much more memory lapses. The effect is also physiological. You can’t breathe. You get chest pains or you throw up. It’s very real. So, healthy or not, I wish a stress-free life for everyone.
The memory lapses come and go. The spell check auto correct comes in handy during those moments but during times like these when my brain is sharp, I also dislike it as much as the rest of the population. To be honest, it is useful specially when I space out and misplace e and i for receive and conceive.
My hopes are up though, because I remembered my grandma kept most of her happy memories. I want my mind to go to where hers went — to happy times.
Keeping busy, avoiding stress funnels and forcing my mind to stay alert decreased my episodes so I decided to write professionally and read as much as I can. It really helps.
Whatever will be, will be like the song. So, to my children, this is for you to retell your own families someday.
Oh! By the way, “The Notebook“… I can soooo relate. =)
The most adventure-filled journey has begun.