Last night I came across a woman’s blog about her mother having been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The story is similar to many families hearing the news and learning to deal with it. However, she said there was a “silver lining” in this as her mother progressed in the disease. It seems her mother was the kind of person who was easily angered and didn’t always show the kind of affection one would have from a parent.
The “silver lining” for her was how her mother has changed to a loving and kind person. She smiles and brings some joy to her daughter.
As I was reading the comments from various individuals there was one that stood out; the person was clearly still very angry about their loved one having the disease. They stated there was no “silver lining” anywhere because this is a horrible disease. Yes, they are right. It is a horrible disease.
I learned through my journey that we look for those “crumbs” of something good. Doing so allows you, the caregiver or family member, to come to grips that this person does, in fact, have dementia and it’s not going to get better. Why not find something positive in the moment?
For me, I became closer to my mother than I ever had growing up. I had a great childhood; couldn’t ask for better parents. Only I wasn’t super close to my mother during those years. As I became an adult that started to change, and when I became her caregiver, it was the closest relationship I ever experienced. In a sense, it was my “silver lining”.
There are families that may never find that “silver lining” as they live with a loved one with any form of dementia. Is that flawed? Not in the least. As I’ve said before, everyone deals with their situation in different ways. There is no “right” or “wrong” if you don’t see a “silver lining”.
What I will say, is you must learn how to cope and deal with the situation where you don’t put yourself in danger with health issues.
As hard as it may seem at the present time, at some point, you will find or see something good or positive or even a “silver lining” that will help you view this despicable disease in another light. Maybe it’s a smile you haven’t seen from your loved one in a long time, or maybe they have a lucid moment and actually talk to you like they used to. Remember, it’s the “crumbs”.
Keep an open mind and look for the “crumbs”, they’re there, you just can’t see them yet.
“I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.” Jeremiah 31:13