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Sharing a picnic in the park

Star of the Orient

Registered User
May 20, 2020
33
I prepared a lovely picnic, packed it in a basket, picnic blankets, strawberries, small sandwiches, cake, cucumber and a tiny bottle of wine. Nibbles for the dogs and off we went.
Perfect weather for sitting in the park under the shade of a tree. It all sent well until we had finished the food, and we were packing up. The dogs ran off and my husband went to bring them back as I finished packing.
We agreed I would start walking on round the path and they would follow. So I walked and walked but no husband or dogs. The basket was too heavy for me and after a while the pain started in my arms and shoulders. One hour later, after sitting on a bench, I walked home to find him feet up with a pot of tea. Asking him why he hadn't done as planned he said 'oh I thought you were going home and I didn't quite hear what you said although I agreed'. I wasn't very polite as my shoulder was in so much pain with the weight of the basket and it had spoiled the picnic for me.
Message to self - only picnics in the garden but what am I doing wrong here, I am a newcomer to his diagnosis and am finding it very hard to live and work with. Any suggestions? I have thought of a picnic trolley but pulling it through the wood, which is a shortcut to the park, would be very tricky. Also, I will tether the dogs in future, my husband likes them to be free range....he doesn't like rules and regulations of any type except if he makes them....
 

karaokePete

Registered User
Jul 23, 2017
5,641
N Ireland
Every person with dementia is somewhat different so I can only advise how I have to operate with my wife.

The first thing with my wife is that any plan of action will not be taken on board - even if I check that I have been heard(I used to do that but learned that it was a waste of time).

The second thing is that if I let my wife out of my sight I have no idea what she will do. Wandering off and doing her own thing, or getting lost, is a given.

The third thing is that I try not to do anything that will make life harder for me - dealing with dementia is tough enough without adding to the burden.

The fourth thing is that a picnic in the garden sounds like a good idea - I hope you enjoy the next one.:)
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
13,607
South coast
Learning that i can no longer rely on OH is a difficult lesson to learn and I still get caught out. Its simply no use planning anything with him, it just wont happen. It will only happen if I make it happen. Like @karaokePete 's wife, if I let OH out of my sight he will either get sidetracked by something else and forget what he is doing, or wander off and get lost. Taking him shopping is a nightmare - he always gets lost and I end up with an announcement over the tannoy system "can Mrs canary please go to customer services where her husband is waiting" Its like having a toddler again and you have to plan things with the same sort of military precision, remembering that you will have to do everything.
 

Star of the Orient

Registered User
May 20, 2020
33
Every person with dementia is somewhat different so I can only advise how I have to operate with my wife.

The first thing with my wife is that any plan of action will not be taken on board - even if I check that I have been heard(I used to do that but learned that it was a waste of time).

The second thing is that if I let my wife out of my sight I have no idea what she will do. Wandering off and doing her own thing, or getting lost, is a given.

The third thing is that I try not to do anything that will make life harder for me - dealing with dementia is tough enough without adding to the burden.

The fourth thing is that a picnic in the garden sounds like a good idea - I hope you enjoy the next one.:)
This is really helpful. I feel sad thinking of all the things we once enjoyed like picnics not being a joy anymore. But I have to get real and put the joy in somewhere else for us. Thank you. The supermarket used to ask my husband on a loudspeaker to come to the till which was funny.
 

Star of the Orient

Registered User
May 20, 2020
33
Learning that i can no longer rely on OH is a difficult lesson to learn and I still get caught out. Its simply no use planning anything with him, it just wont happen. It will only happen if I make it happen. Like @karaokePete 's wife, if I let OH out of my sight he will either get sidetracked by something else and forget what he is doing, or wander off and get lost. Taking him shopping is a nightmare - he always gets lost and I end up with an announcement over the tannoy system "can Mrs canary please go to customer services where her husband is waiting" Its like having a toddler again and you have to plan things with the same sort of military precision, remembering that you will have to do everything.
Yes, very true. You have encourage me to think differently. Toddlers - as a primary teacher I only have dealt with age 4 upwards and we didn't have children. I might do a little research on this age group to help.