Adapting to dementia – Part 2

Following on from yesterday’s part 1 blog about the ways I’ve found to adapt to living with dementia:

When I wanted a new camera, I thought I wanted one that could do everything as I love photography (even though I’m not that good at it!) but when I went to try some out it became apparent that too many options fuddled my brain and I just got confused. So I kept trying less and less sophisticated models until I found one I was comfortable with. Found one with a user-friendly menu but had lots of easy to use extras – perfect!

I love reading but can’t follow novels anymore so now I simply read short stories that can be finished at one sitting – perfect!

I can no longer drive – so I take public transport, cycle (as long as I remember to get off when turning right!) or walk – I don’t make it an issue.

The biggest sadness for me is not being able to run any more. My brain and legs no longer appear to communicate when I have to change direction – brain goes one way, legs go the other, resulting in me falling flat on my face………I was never very fast or ran amazing distances but I loved it and ran most days. This has left a huge hole that I need to fill. On March 30th the wonderful Susie Hewer ran a marathon in Dover  for me in the most appalling weather. You can see the detail at:

http://extremeknittingredhead.blogspot.co.uk

We know each other through Join Dementia Research and she knows how much I loved running. Susie has given herself the amazing challenge of running 60 marathons by the time she’s 60 in 2017. She ran her first at the age of 48!  In a few weeks time she is running 3 marathons in 4 days, the last of which is her 10th London marathon. She has so far raised £35,000 for dementia research – a truly inspiring, amazing woman.

I got side tracked telling you about Susie – I need to find something to fill the gap left by running. I have always been a fitness freak for as long as I can remember (not that it did my brain any good -ha!) I still walk lots – it never ceases to amaze my daughters how I often walk when a bus will do. I haven’t found anything else yet to take the place of running though.

Finally, accept adaptations don’t fight them – that goes for family and friends as well.

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About wendy7713

On the 31st July 2014 I was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s. I may not have much of a short term memory anymore but that date is one I’ll never forget. I’m 58 years young, live happily alone in Yorkshire, have 2 daughters and I’m currently still in full time employment in the NHS. However, I’m now in the process of taking early retirement to give me a chance of enjoying life while I’m still me. I've started this blog to allow me, in the first instance, to write all my thoughts before they’re lost. If anyone chooses to follow my ramblings it will serve as a way of raising awareness on the lack of research into Alzheimer's. It will hopefully convey the helplessness of those diagnosed with dementia, as there is no cure – the end is inevitable. However, I’m also hoping I can convey that, although we've been diagnosed, people like me still have a substantial contribution to make; we still have a sense of humour; we sill have feelings. I’m hoping to show the reality of trying to cope on a day to day basis with the ever-changing environment that dementia throws at those diagnosed with the condition. What I want is not sympathy. What I want is simply to raise awareness.

3 thoughts on “Adapting to dementia – Part 2

  1. Sad to hear the running is over Wendy – I love running too and would find it hard to have to stop. But it sounds like you lead a pretty busy life anyway.

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  2. Hi Wendy, I am also living with Dementia and started to follow your blog. Which camera did you go for in the end. Mine wants to Dance on its own, lol!

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    1. Hi Jacqui
      Lovely to talk to you. In the end I went for a Nikon Coolpix S9600 but can’t stress enough how useful it was to play with lots in the shop. I wasn’t intending on going for one like that but it just seemed to make sense to me:))

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