It’s not really surprising that a diagnosis of dementia focuses the mind on the important things in life. Life takes on a type of urgency that wasn’t there before as no one can tell you how long you have left of your normal self. There you are one minute, strolling quite happily through life doing things as and when you feel like it, planning years ahead to a time when you can relax and retire and have time to fill as you like. Then the next minute there’s this crushing uncertainty which creates panic in the mind as you now know you’re not going to hold onto memories for ever. Deciding what my priorities are is a momentous task – what you once took for granted may now never take place. Your ‘priority list’ looks very different now than it may have done pre-diagnosis. So I asked myself, ‘what don’t I want to forget’ and went about creating a room with pictures of all my favourite places – my favourite ‘views’ from life. I haven’t travelled much but I have so many places and views that I want to be able to remember. One picture is even made up of photos of all the houses I’ve lived in. Then,obviously, there are the faces of family and friends. It seems impossible yet inevitable that these will all become unfamiliar as time goes on but maybe, just maybe, they’ll provide a spark of recognition and pleasant memories. Maybe to some people this will all sound very morbid but I don’t really look upon this as thinking of the future – what I’m trying to do is set things in place now so they’re there to help me when needed.