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Grandads first Christmas

Discussion in 'Recently diagnosed and early stages of dementia' started by Daisy-Chain, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. Daisy-Chain

    Daisy-Chain New member

    Nov 13, 2017
    Hi guys! I'm new to this forum, well any online forum really! And I am, how you would say... technically challenged at the best of times!

    Why am I here? I have no idea! To get things off my chest, to get some advise? I don't know, but I already feel better.

    After a long journey of my grandads battle with dementia came so very heartbreaking end, I was left with a huge hole in my heart. My grandad was a very difficult man and enjoyed every single moment of it, playing up with his cheeky grin I ended up being the only one that could get him dressed or to take his tablets. If you can't beat em join them join em I thought, we used sing songs when the room was quiet and When he'd go for long walks that ended up at the pub I would join him. In some ways the dementia bought us closer. But now he has passed and I thank god that I have those memories of the man was and the man that became.

    Two years have passed and I have moved to the states, only to get the news my other grandad (my mums dad) has been diagnosed with very early Alzheimer's, not being able to be there I feel I'm far apart from him in every way possible. With Christmas on the way, I'm so looking forward to spending it with my loved ones and my grandad, we all love playing games but I'm worried he will feel overwhelmed.
    I'm aware that his tea making skills are not so easy anymore, and forgets Day to day things, but me and my cousin are wondering if anyone has any advise on this matter.

    We just want him to feel part of the day and feel comfortable to join in as this is all new to us and very different to what we went through with my other grandad. I would really appreciate some advise.

    Thanks Daisy xx
  2. Shedrech

    Shedrech Volunteer Host

    Dec 15, 2012
    hello Daisy-Chain
    welcome to TP
    how sad for you all that your family are facing dementia again with your mum's dad
    heart-warming, though, that you have such fond memories of your dad's dad
    I think you are pretty aware of how to support your granddad, as you are already considering that he may be overwhelmed by the change in routine at Christmas with so many people around - so keep an eye out and maybe have somewhere quiet prepared for him to retreat to once in a while where family might pop in one at a time
    have a chat with his main carer (grandma? mum?) and upfront ask what is best for them and what you can do to help out, as his carer might also appreciate some quiet time to themselves
    it is a relief to chat about what's on your mind - so keep posting
  3. LadyA

    LadyA Volunteer Host

    Oct 19, 2009
    Hello @Daisy chain and welcome. I'm sorry you are facing this again.

    Christmas can be a difficult time for people with dementia and their families. We want things to be "normal", and we want everyone to enjoy themselves, enjoy the company, the food, the atmosphere etc. However, the disruption of normality can be very difficult for a person with dementia to cope with. Of course, your grandfather is, you say, in early stages. So you may not notice anything much different as yet.

    For family gatherings etc to be successful with someone with dementia, it's vital that they have somewhere quiet that they can retreat from the hubbub. Naps are also life savers. And a quiet day or two among all the gatherings and festivities.

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