Tag Archive | grief

Sundowning and Alzheimer’s Disease

sundowning

Confusion, extreme confusion, often comes during late afternoon or at night for those with Alzheimer’s and so that’s why it’s called sundowning.  Lately, we’ve seen it come and go at all times of day, with no predictable time frame.

Watching a loved one fret and worry is exhausting for the loved one with Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia and for those of us who care for them.  As the mind whirls into a vortex of unpredictability, thoughts firing at random, words tumbling out nonsensically, a helplessness sinks in and an urgency to help in any way possible to allow for peace and tranquility.

When sleep can be encouraged, it seems to dilute the chaos in their minds, allowing our loved one a little peace.  Changing the subject to one of love and beauty helps as well, but sometimes that button cannot be unpushed, the channel cannot be changed and we all whirl in the frenzy for a bit.

Have you ever experienced this as a caregiver of a loved one?

It’s not easy to remain untouched by the emotionality of the situation, let alone what is unknowingly coming out of their mouth.  Thoughts flicker, reality surges and fades and my heart breaks wide open with sadness for I cannot even begin to fathom how hard this is for her, let alone for me.

This disease is just so hard and old age, as the adage goes, ‘ain’t for sissies.’

Shine On!

xo

 

 

 

Alzheimer’s Disease and Telling a Loved One About a Death

alzheimersflowerMy Mom recently lost her sister with whom she lived in a memory care facility.  It broke my heart to deliver the news to her, so I remained mum for a while and didn’t tell her.  She believed our Aunt was still alive in the hospital for longer than she was, as we contemplated how to tell her the sad news.

But God and the Universe had different plans.  For you see, her resident friends who knew Aunt Mable were also concerned about Aunt Mable and wondered when she would return home.  Mom was told that she was still in the hospital getting treatment, but in truth, she had passed away.  Little could any of us know that one little lady, who is wheelchair bound, blind and has hallucinations along with memory issues would be able to succeed in calling the hospital in hopes that Mom could talk with Aunt Mable and get more information.  A miracle unto itself that she accomplished this with her cell phone.  Sadly, she got the news that Mable had passed away and in a loving manner told Mom.  I know she thought she was helping, but her announcement wasn’t what we had planned.  We were trying to get to Mom to tell her ourselves in person.

Looking through the eyes of an observer, this little lady’s heart was in the right place.  She saw our Mom upset and wanted to help and when I see the situation with a loving heart, I am grateful.  But in that moment when Mom reached out to me, sobbing that she had heard that her sister had passed away and was frantic, I felt powerless.  I had wanted so much to shield Mom from the pain and be there when she found out in order to help her through her grief.  In the end though, life unfolded as it was meant to be.

It is hard for anyone with memory issues to remember, let alone to keep the information that a loved one has passed away, for their ability to remember fades and rallies, moment to moment.  The acceptance of what feels unacceptable (a death of a sister) is too much for the mind to handle and it fades, only to return after a bit and the grief begins again.  It’s a roller coaster for all involved as we try so desperately to soothe a broken heart as the knowledge comes and goes, along with the grief.

There’s no easy way and from my experiences, the only rule is to keep a loving heart, flow with the moment’s understanding and continue to offer love and support to Mom.  That’s all we can do in every situation quite honestly.  Be open, be kind and love.

May you find your Sunday to be filled with peace and love, this is my wish always.

Shine On!

xo

 

 

 

Saying Goodbye To A Loved One

sayinggoodbyetoalovedone

As I climbed into bed last night, laid my weary head and heart on the soft down pillow, I sighed deeply.  Such a day full of emotion and perseverance that frankly, I was exhausted.  I closed my eyes and began to pray for peace as I often do.  In that quiet moment of reverie, I surrendered.  I had done all that I could, pushed through the limits and swallowed and alternatively let go of many tears.  But as I prayed, it was in gratitude for all of the angels who attended this day.

When a loved one passes, it is never easy for those left behind.  After the initial shock, because even when we know they are sick, it is still a shock to know that they have passed, there was work to be done, papers to be signed, a funeral home to be called, family and friends to be notified and a personal life of responsibility to continue living, all at the same time.  It’s a day of moving through the grief in order to process the necessities that need to be done, all the while, alternatively stifling and letting out the grief of losing a loved one.  Tears poured from my eyes at times and quiet sobs escaped (probably not so quietly) as the reality hit me in waves.

Last night the epiphany which I knew already, hit me.  Why do we grieve when our loved one passes?  Some of us believe that their departed souls return home to God and I have to ask myself,  why aren’t I rejoicing that she is no longer in earthy life school, no longer suffering with a body which had grown old and desperately needed repair?  My answer was selfish – I wanted to be with her when she passed and hold her hand as she departed peacefully from this earth, onward and upward back home.  I wanted her to hear my voice telling her how much we loved her and although I tried to move mountains in plane travel plans, I was unable to get to her in time.  What brings my sad heart peace is that I know in my heart that she knew I loved her and she was not alone when she passed.  She had her pastor there, who by the grace of God, arrived only moments beforehand.  She had been visited by a dear friend of ours who had kissed her on the forehead and told her how much we all loved her.  At 88, she had lived a long life, on her own terms with lots of love in her heart and a dash of stubbornness which served her well.  She had brought much joy to the world by being a teacher who made a difference and who had received the joy and was gifted back by her students (especially Lisa).

This morning I awoke thinking of Aunt Mable and as tears poured down my face in the early dawn, house quiet, alone with my thoughts, I realized again, how short this life can be even when it lasts 88 years and how important making connections with others truly is.  Although I often write about connecting with others, I’m reminded yet again, how our legacy is in our connections and not in our earthly possessions.  I think it bears repeating.  Hearts connecting means more than material possessions as we flow to our next chapter.  The legacy of making a difference, accepting, helping, inspiring, encouraging and loving are pricelessly worth millions in spiritual wealth.

So this morning, I bow my head in honor of a life well-lived, an Aunt whom I loved and who loved me.  I know she is home again in Heaven, with her family and loved ones and she is remembered here by the loved ones and family she left behind.  Surely, her soul is leaping with joy to be pain-free, her brain free of the confines of dementia, and free of the bonds of life school.  Rest in peace, Aunt Mable.

Thank you dearest friends for allowing me to share this morning.  I needed to write.  May you have a lovely Saturday, making connections with all whom you meet and even if a simple smile passes between you and a stranger, let the love of humankind flow freely.

Shine On!

xo

Have You Ever Had Signs From Loved Ones?

happybirthdayinheaven

Born on All Saint’s Day, my Dad has celebrated his birthday in Heaven for 5 years now.  Tempus Fugit as he would say, meaning ‘time flies’ and I would humbly have to agree with him.

I’m a bit melancholy today.  Perhaps that happens to you when it’s a loved one’s birth or death date  who has already passed on?  So much has changed in our lives since he left.  So much of our lives have changed so drastically.  Sometimes I wish I could just ask him for advice.

And then, just when I’m wondering if I’m doing everything right, or the way he would have wanted me to, he sends an earthy angel to tell me.  Recently, a friend of mine, out of the blue, who never knew my Dad told me that my Dad wanted me to know that he is prroud of me for all that I’m doing now.  This man said he felt a huge urge to say that to me and to pass along a message to me (from my Dad).  It was as if my Dad knew I needed to hear those words and I most certainly did.

While the veil is thinner, I pray that you and your loved ones can communicate a bit more, or at least, you can feel peace.  I have had a few signs lately, so I know he’s watching over his family.  There’s been a lot of forgiveness between us because as you know, ‘time heals,’ and I’m proof of that phrase.

So be on the lookout – feathers, coins, synchronicity, unexplained phenomenon and sometimes even more physical feelings of cool air, lights blinking, etc. can be signs.

Love is eternal even when we can’t see them.

Have you ever had signs from loved ones?  Please share!

Shine On!

xo

 

Teardrop Poetry

teardroppoetry

Teardrops fall unbidden

like raindrops outside the window,

nourishing the soul,

so she can blossom again.

Cleansing, letting go

of winters passed

turning a tear-streaked face

to the spring of a new dawn.

~The Presents of Presence

Shine On!

xo

When You’re Feeling Like the Only One

whenyou'refeelingliketheonlyone

There are times in life when you just feel like you’re the only one who is enduring (insert whatever it is that you are experiencing).  You may feel as if nobody understands your situation.  You may even feel alone, untethered and grieving.  It happens to all of us.  It is a normal part of the ebb and flow in life.

But to reach beyond and out of the moment is where your lessons in life school challenge you to search within and to look up and all around you to connect with yourself, God, the Divine Universe and with others of like-mindedness.  To find the positivity in any situation, to allow yourself to be present with the pain/hurt/disappointment and to find a sense of peace even while chaos swirls in one of life’s lessons is the key.  It is in human eagerness the need to smooth the rough edges, to bypass the grief at all costs, to hide away the disconnect from ourselves and others and to make everything okay as soon as possible.  Sure, wallowing in sadness cannot be limitless, but to experience what we are feeling, as we are feeling it and to connect with whatever we are feeling is beneficial.  The choice to move beyond that to a place of peace no matter the circumstances is the lesson here.  And as you know, for we have all had our trials and tribulations, it is not an easy task at times.

But it is possible…and it is your choice for you have free will.

Cloistered in self-pity, does not serve you, nor the world.  It isolates people, disconnects them from reality and from those who want to help.  But it takes courage to connect with others and to connect with our own hearts.  It takes trust in the soul’s knowing that we can open up and be with whatever is happening.  That’s the tough part which many of us find distasteful as we lack the trust within ourselves and therefore, lack trust in the Universal Truths of Life.

I have been there dear friends.  I understand how you feel no matter if our circumstances are not the same.  The bare fact is that the similar feelings join us in ways unbeknownst to most of us.  Universal Healing happens when we connect through hearts and souls on this life path.  The simple act of connecting with another soul, hearing and feeling that someone else understands, makes all the difference in the world.

So today, no matter what you are enduring, please know that I have my hand here for you hold.   My heart is here to connect with yours and my understanding is available to help you to continue on this life path of healing.  I have learned that in reaching out, we also benefit in our own healing and through connecting, we raise our vibrations, enthusiastically joining and reverberating peace throughout the world.

Shine your heartlights.  Join together in peaceful presence.  I see you shining!

Shine On!

xo

How To Pick Yourself Up

howtopickyourselfup

There are times in all of our lives when all of our best laid plans and dreams go kapluey. (Does anyone know how to spell that word correctly?  Please advise!)  It hardly ever happens at a convenient time because, let’s be frank, whoever says, “I want upheaval in my life right now!  Woo Hoo!  Bring it on!”  To my knowledge, those people are few and far between, as the majority of us would prefer smooth sailing.

But that’s not always possible, nor is it probably beneficial, because even in nature, a little rain must fall from time to time to grow us, a little sun must shine to heal us and a little wind must blow to help us to connect with others.

Ok, am I being too spiritual for you?  Do you think I don’t understand all that you’re enduring?  I may not, but I have endured much in this life so far and I have found that in sharing our stories, we help ourselves and others to find peace.

Maybe that’s not the way for you.  Perhaps the darkness feels too heavy right now for you.  I have been there and I understand.  I have felt the weight of sadness in my life.  We all have.  But it’s what you do with your sadness that makes the difference.

There’s a time and a place to sink into the sad, poor me bubble.  I do not deny that fact.  But there is a time when we must be like the little donkey, see my post ~ https://misifusa.wordpress.com/2013/08/30/fridays-burro/ ~ and take what we are given and use the experiences to find our heartlight again, to reignite it and to grow!

I can hear some of you now ~ she doesn’t get what I’m dealing with here, I’m just barely surviving, this is too pie in the sky baloney, she doesn’t know me, she doesn’t have a clue, etc.

Yes, I know and you are right.  I do not understand whatever you are dealing with at this time.  But then again, maybe I’ve experienced something similar.

The difference is what we do when the chips are down and how we react when our path gets strewn with debris, disappointments and such.  We can get angry, get resentful and be hurtful.  We can wallow in an all-out pity party.  We can turn the other cheek.  We can walk away.  We can hang on with all we’ve got.  We can share our strive with trusted friends.  We can take pills to make the pain go away.  We can attend to fixing the situation at hand.  We can ignore it.  We can allow our hearts to harden.  We can be doormats.  We can put up walls and shut everyone out.

OR

We can look inside of ourselves and work on healing.

It’s a choice dear friends.  That’s what life is all about ~ choices.  We have the freedom to choose every single moment of everyday.  We can choose again if we find that our initial choice isn’t what we want.  That’s the beauty of life school.

So how do we pick ourselves up after we stumble?

We choose to pick ourselves up.  That’s step one and a very important step in life.  The first one is sometimes the hardest step (you’ve heard the expression, that first step is a lulu!) but it’s the beginning after an ending and it’s a baby step for sure.

But it is always, a step in the right direction and that’s how we pick ourselves up!

Shine On!

xo