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Holiday

Bugs

New member
Aug 27, 2020
6
This is my first post.
My OH is in the early stages of dementia. We have had an appointment with the doctor who said it is definitely dementia and will have an initial telephone consultation with the Memory Clinic in a few weeks time.
We have been at the Isle of Wight for the last week having a lovely holiday. The weather has been perfect and we have done all sorts of things on this beautiful island and would love to come back next year for another visit. This morning, as we were sitting in our hotel room overlooking the sea, OH mentioned that there were a lot of empty parking places. As he repeated himself 15 or 20 times, I felt an overwhelming sadness. In a years time will he be able to travel here? Will he cope staying in this lovely little hotel or will it be too much for him? Will he manage the stairs which he can only just cope with at the moment? Is this the last real holiday we will manage to have? Over the last 4 years we have had to cancel every holiday due to various health issues which is what has made this get away so precious. Will it be the last?
We are taking home some wonderful memories and if OH can’t retain those memories then I shall just have to remember them for him.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,965
Kent
Welcome to Dementia Talking Point @Bugs.

Continue to enjoy holidays together for as long as possible. They may not provide memories for your husband but they will for you.

You can always modify your accommodation, make sure there are lifts rather than stairs. Perhaps if you want to stay in the same hotel they might have a staff lift you could use.

You will know when the time comes to stop having holidays by your day to day living but until them make the most of the time you have left.
 

wightdancer

Registered User
Mar 15, 2017
67
You have to keep it simple. Your partner with dementia will cope better in an environment where there are less people, so perhaps rather than a hotel rent an apartment next time.
 

PalSal

Registered User
Dec 4, 2011
913
Pratteln Switzerland
As always Granny G gives good advice. My hubby who was diagnosed very young retained many of his skills in the early years. He continued to sail with friends in Greece and Croatia for a number of years before he could no longer. But during the first 5 years he could travel and sail.
 

AliceA

Registered User
May 27, 2016
2,863
Enjoy what you have, do not look too far ahead, enough to order the groceries!
our minds can spoil what we have in the moment.
life ahead may not be the same but that does not mean it is not enjoyable.
when we reached a stage ov not travelling, travel films brought back early memories to share.
some may find this sounds sad, but it was not, it made us smile, laugh.
no cost or queues either. We reached a stage where travel was not possible but that happens dementia or not.
 

Whisperer

Registered User
Mar 27, 2017
218
Dear Bugs

Several good suggestions about future holidays.

One point I would suggest for you to consider. I found the repeated statements, questions, reading of articles to me, etc, a cause of great sadness. More than anything they started to get me down.

through the carers group I attended pre lockdown I had the chance to discuss matters with a counsellor from the Alzheimer’s Society. The lady taught me a simple strategy to hold onto when diversion failed with mum. Your mum is reading an article to you because she remembers it is on a subject you will find interesting. Okay read several times but let’s look at that differently. Mum remembers your interests, is connecting with you, can still read, etc. The repeated questions are often a search for reassurance. Do not just confirm yes we locked the doors before going out. Squeeze her hand, hold eye contact, smile and then say “sure did mum we are all safe and sound at home“ in a gentle but reassuring voice. I found it did work sometimes, or at least it reduced the number of times asked.

Hope you enjoy a holiday next year. Reducing some of the daily background sadness you mention will help every day. As Tesco’s would say every little helps. Holidays can last a week or a few minutes if you recognise them all.
 

northumbrian_k

Registered User
Mar 2, 2017
1,051
Newcastle
I kept going on holiday with my wife for as long as I thought they might be of benefit to both of us. By the time of our last holiday I realised that the effort and upheaval involved was not matched by very much that was positive. So we stopped. But as you say, @Bugs I still have the memories that are lost to her. No one can answer the question that is at the heart of your post as the progress of dementia is both person-specific and unpredictable. Adapt your expectations and take practical steps to deal with issues you have raised. Continue with holidays whilst you can but don't be afraid to stop when you know it is time.
 

Vic10

Registered User
Feb 18, 2017
172
Oh do try and carry on with holidays if you can, as others have said,if necessary ground floor or lifts. It may be good to find somewhere now and visit if you can, going back to the same place is good so that there is a bit of familiarity.
I stopped holidays a year ago and I just knew the time was right. Try not to anticipate you will no when you need to stop. Hope you are able to enjoy a few more!
 

Jaded'n'faded

Registered User
Jan 23, 2019
947
High Peak
Just wanted to say I'm not surprised you are sad. Dementia is cruel and heartless.

But your OH might surprise you and there may be more holidays for you both to enjoy. I hope so :)
 

jennifer1967

Registered User
Mar 15, 2020
956
Southampton
when we went to my sons wedding at christmas i knew he shouldnt have traveled. we went by coach from southampton to blue water my son lives in dartford. we have to change at victoria where they have a mobility lounge which is a service that takes you off the coach[wheelchair if needed] and you go to a lo0unge which is away from the crowds and a disabled toilet, then they take you to your connecting coach before anyone else gets on.my husband liked the front seat so thats where he sat but after the wedding he just wanted to go home so we repeated the process on the way back. he hadnt been diagnosed at the time but the signs were there and he had dementia just not what sort. he declined so much after that that i dont think we will be making the journey again. he keeps talking about holiday next where etc but i cant see hes well enough to travel or enjoy himself while hes there. sad because he wants to go back to devon where he was born and grew up one more time but without a car and i cant drive theres no real likelihood of that happening.he has family down there
 

Spamar

Registered User
Oct 5, 2013
7,495
Suffolk
Hi Bugs,
My husband had vascular dementia as well as Alzheimers, and we went away for several holidays post diagnosis. However, as time went on, I changed the format of them. I made sure that our room was accessible via a lift, for instance ( he had vascular problems in his legs, making walking difficult. We started to go by coach for a shorter holiday instead of me doing all the driving! Eventually we spent several holidays in Cornwall staying with one of my cousins. Lots of places to go, none of them too far away.
So yes, you should be able to have more holidays, but just adapt to what he can with.
 

Bugs

New member
Aug 27, 2020
6
Thank you all so much for the replies and the support. I’m so glad I was pointed towards this forum where everyone understands, gives really helpful advice and no one judges. We are home now having stopped for lunch with some old friends. OH is now fast asleep. It’s good to be home.
 

Agzy

Registered User
Nov 16, 2016
1,575
Moreton, Wirral. UK.
Pauline and I used to tour all over UK and EU in our caravan and, for about 3 years after she lost interest I still went off the Spain in it for up to 2 months at a stretch. All stopped now unfortunately. When it became very clear three years ago that while she could look after herself and in fact preferred her own company it would not last long I took decision to holiday binge! In just over 2 years I toured Canada east to west coast, toured South Africa and the Cape followed by another visit to Canada and a tour of Alaska. All stopped now but I have my photos, slide shows and memories whist she cant even remember me going away on my own.
 

Duggies-girl

Registered User
Sep 6, 2017
2,101
Pauline and I used to tour all over UK and EU in our caravan and, for about 3 years after she lost interest I still went off the Spain in it for up to 2 months at a stretch. All stopped now unfortunately. When it became very clear three years ago that while she could look after herself and in fact preferred her own company it would not last long I took decision to holiday binge! In just over 2 years I toured Canada east to west coast, toured South Africa and the Cape followed by another visit to Canada and a tour of Alaska. All stopped now but I have my photos, slide shows and memories whist she cant even remember me going away on my own.
That sounds really wonderful @Agzy and you were right to go when you did. They are all places I planned to visit after dad but of course my plans are scuppered again. I can spend my time planning instead. I would love to visit Canada, I went with my mum when I was young and it was wonderful and I also want to visit some of the places my dad went to when he was at sea.. One day perhaps.
 

jennifer1967

Registered User
Mar 15, 2020
956
Southampton
That sounds really wonderful @Agzy and you were right to go when you did. They are all places I planned to visit after dad but of course my plans are scuppered again. I can spend my time planning instead. I would love to visit Canada, I went with my mum when I was young and it was wonderful and I also want to visit some of the places my dad went to when he was at sea.. One day perhaps.
ive actually got a canadain
That sounds really wonderful @Agzy and you were right to go when you did. They are all places I planned to visit after dad but of course my plans are scuppered again. I can spend my time planning instead. I would love to visit Canada, I went with my mum when I was young and it was wonderful and I also want to visit some of the places my dad went to when he was at sea.. One day perhaps.
i have actually got a canadian daughter-in-law who married my son at christmas with her mum came over and they have a 2 1/2 yr old son whose picked up the accent and i can hear say hi nanny in the accent hes got dual nationality and they were going to canada when covid started from halifax canada
 

Agzy

Registered User
Nov 16, 2016
1,575
Moreton, Wirral. UK.
That sounds really wonderful @Agzy and you were right to go when you did. They are all places I planned to visit after dad but of course my plans are scuppered again. I can spend my time planning instead. I would love to visit Canada, I went with my mum when I was young and it was wonderful and I also want to visit some of the places my dad went to when he was at sea.. One day perhaps.
Mine was a coach tour with a solo travellers group and absolutely amazing x
 

Bugs

New member
Aug 27, 2020
6
Pauline and I used to tour all over UK and EU in our caravan and, for about 3 years after she lost interest I still went off the Spain in it for up to 2 months at a stretch. All stopped now unfortunately. When it became very clear three years ago that while she could look after herself and in fact preferred her own company it would not last long I took decision to holiday binge! In just over 2 years I toured Canada east to west coast, toured South Africa and the Cape followed by another visit to Canada and a tour of Alaska. All stopped now but I have my photos, slide shows and memories whist she cant even remember me going away on my own.
 

Bugs

New member
Aug 27, 2020
6
I have never been to Canada but love the Cape in South Africa where both I and OH have sisters living. i would love to take him to SA to see his sister when this horrible Covid permits travel but worry that the travel insurance would make it not feasible. It would involve an overnight flightand his feet swell up during the course the day anyway and I think a long haul flight would make things even more difficult for him.
 

Agzy

Registered User
Nov 16, 2016
1,575
Moreton, Wirral. UK.
I have never been to Canada but love the Cape in South Africa where both I and OH have sisters living. i would love to take him to SA to see his sister when this horrible Covid permits travel but worry that the travel insurance would make it not feasible. It would involve an overnight flightand his feet swell up during the course the day anyway and I think a long haul flight would make things even more difficult for him.
My memories of sitting atop Table Mountain in the sunshine are indelibly burned onto my brain, beautiful place and truly hope your plans pan out somehow x