Love for those with Dementia

February is called a month of LOVE. I was asked in the past, “What do you do when your loved one acts like a child?”  My response was, “You treat them with respect as your elder”.

What are some ways to love the person with dementia?  All senses are altered, and it is difficult for the brain to process the changes.  Reaching out and touching, hugging, or holding hands can go a long way in calming an agitated loved one.

Playing old hymns or other soft music of their era will sometimes provide comfort and calm. 

It is never easy for the caregiver, but showing love in facial expressions and actions can go a long way in maintaining a peaceful environment.

If you are in the Clemson, SC area, I will be teaching a course titled “Dealing with Dementia” at

OLLI (Clemson’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute)

OLLI - CHEEZEM EDU CENTER (map)

100 Thomas Green Blvd.
Clemson, SC 29631

Phone: 864-633-5242

Wednesday, February 21 at 11 AM - 12:30 PM

Sign up at www.olliatclemson.org – Limit 20

2017! A New Year!

2017, January

Twenty-two years ago, my mother graduated to heaven after an unexpected stroke.  This started my 17 year caregiving journey.  What lessons did I need to learn?  First lesson: I am very selfish of both my time and possessions.  Second Lesson: God is ready and waiting to meet every need!

These are two very important lessons I hope I never forget!  What are the lessons you are working to conquer this year?  Never give up, never quit and never stop loving your loved ones no matter their actions or attitudes.  Most of the time, the disease is talking, not your loved one.  Wrap your arms around them and let them feel safe and loved, in much the same way as God wants to ‘wrap His arms around you’ and help you feel safe and loved.

Philippians 3:12-14, Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

 

Be an Advocate for Your Loved One!

With the aging of “the Greatest Generation” and then the “Baby Boomers”, healthcare and healthcare expenses have become a hot topic in the news. The Netherlands has had legalized euthanasia for many years. Do you know in 1994, Oregon legalized euthanasia, Washington in 2008, Montana in 2009, and Vermont in 2013 for anyone over the age of 18 with a life expectancy of six months or less? Hospice care is non-existent in the Netherlands because it is cheaper to ‘euthanasize’ than spend money on someone who is going to die soon anyway. As government healthcare for the large population of elderly “Baby Boomers” continues, be an advocate for your loved ones!

Psalm 139:14 "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:"

or further discussion, visit our Facebook page: Biblical Caregiving

Sharing Memories

Love – the excitement of Valentine’s Day. Take a moment and reflect on all the things your loved one did when you were young to make Valentine’s Day special. How many “things” come to mind as gifts for Valentine’s Day? Flowers, chocolates, jewelry, cards… Can you remember anything specifically? I know all of these gifts are welcome but as we age, we do not really need things but much prefer time.  

The time with your loved one will never be lost and will always be remembered. How will that time look? A time of patience and desire to truly spend quality as well as quantity time with them? Or will it be just another appointment on your packed calendar you are obligated to fulfill? Whether you are caring for your loved one in your home, their home, an assisted living home or a nursing home this month of Love, give them the gift of your time!

Love

For the caregiver, both of these designations are applicable.

We as caregivers, need to love intentionally. The love we show someone for whom we are caring, day in and day out can wax and wane. Oh, we really do love them but we don’t always love caring for them. Choose to LOVE INTENTIONALLY this month.

The American Heart Association has designated this Heart month. I am going to make a broad assumption and suggest most caregivers are women. Women often neglect or ignore their health until it is too late. We, as caregivers, men or women, are often too busy to think about our own health.  We need to take a moment and evaluate our own heart – both physically and spiritually.

This month’s A-Z scriptures for memorization/meditation are:

"Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares (loves intentionally) for you."  (I Peter 5:7)

"Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it." (Psalm 34:14)