1. Kate P

    Kate P Registered User

    Jul 6, 2007
    Sadly this weekend I realised that my memories of mum are becoming tarnished with this hateful disease.

    I'm struggling to remember what she was like before her illness (it's been four years since she first started showing real symptoms). As time goes on will it be harder and harder to remember the person she once was?

    I also feel really sad that mine and my sisters children will never know their real grandma - all they'll remember is mum since she's been ill.

    It's not a major thing I know but it's sad isn't it?

    I was thinking of making a memory book with photos and get everyone to write in their favourite memories of mum pre dementia but it feels a bit morbid like she's already died or something (which in someways she has because there's really no remnants of the woman she once was but I'm sure not everyone will feel that way).
  2. Devonmaid

    Devonmaid Registered User

    Sep 23, 2007
    Dartmoor Devon
    Dear Kate P , I think its a lovely idea to make a memory book and it will help you also . I know it is very hard to remember the pre dementia times, I am just the same and you have promted me to do the same thing for my grandchildren , thank you
    Love Kate
  3. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    SW Scotland
    Kate, I don't think it's morbid at all, in fact I think it's an excellent idea. It's one of the suggestions of helpful ideas for people going to daycare, or into residential care. If you explained it like that, I'm sure people would agree.

    When you've assembled it, could you put it on the computer and make a copy for everyone? That will give your children something to keep, and also would at a later stage be available for day care/NH. I'm sure you wouldn't want top part with the original.

    It will also help you to keep your memories fresh, as you relive your own life with your mum. Perhaps you could also involve your dad -- I'm sure that would help him too.

    Good luck with it,

  4. Mameeskye

    Mameeskye Registered User

    Aug 9, 2007
    Hi Kate

    Your memories of your Mum will return. At times though this disease can be so overwhelming that it can be difficult to remember. I remember as my Dad was dying he refused in the latter months to allow us to take photos as he wanted us to remember how he was pre illness. I also know that when he first passed away you did remember the worst part at the end but after a while your memories became the fun things that you had done with him. They do come back.

    My sons are like your daughter and will never know their Nana other than the person she has become with this horrid disease.

    Before they were born we gave my Mum and DH's parents a grandparents book to fill out. My Mum never did it. I found it blank when I cleared the house. My Dad unfortunately died within weeks of me seeing them for the first time and I was too afraid of distressing him to buy it at the time. If you and your Dad can fill it in with her that would be brilliant and it is good for carers in the future to see what the person they are caring for once looked like and did.

    In Mum's home at the moment there is a man who taught me 30 years ago. He can be aggressive but I still see him as the caring teacher that he once was and have been able to tell the carers there about this man before AD.

    My Neice who is 12 remembers Nana as she was and I am hoping that she will share a little of how she remembers Nana with my sons in the future.

    I too am so sad that my sons will never know my parents.


  5. Trich

    Trich Registered User

    Aug 16, 2007
    Hi Kate,
    I think it's a great idea to get together the photos and family memories. Something positive to do. My family are in the process of doing just that for my dad. He does still recognise people but gets confused with names and who is related to who. Do you have any video tapes of your mum? Or ask around the family and other people may have. These capture the personality in a way which photos can't. Even old ones can be converted. I have just realised that I am guilty of having a 'blank' grandparents book. Today we have just become grandparents again so I will do it for my new grandson. Thanks for reminding me.
  6. Taffy

    Taffy Registered User

    Apr 15, 2007
    Dear Kate,
    I agree with Mameeskye's reply, the memories do return. I can remember thinking years back, will I ever remember the way my caring mum was.
    I think it's the sadness of the present situation that makes you feel that way. The wonderful memories are all still there stored in your memory bank.
    It's sad that the Grandchildren have missed out on knowing their Grandma before this illness, a memory book is a wonderful idea. Best Wishes Taffy.
  7. Cymbaline

    Cymbaline Registered User

    Aug 23, 2007
    I think a memory book is a great idea. My mum's had Alzheimer's for the past 12 years or so and I too am struggling to remember what a wonderful person she was before this awful disease stole her away. Photographs are a great way of bringing back memories and perhaps are easier to look at than old camcorder footage.
  8. Lucille

    Lucille Registered User

    Sep 10, 2005
    Hi Kate
    I know what you mean. Sometimes, when I look at mum, I feel myself hating what she's become: vacant, uncaring, needy. All the things she wasn't before she became ill. I think your memory book is a good idea. For me, I have loads of pictures of me and mum on shared holidays and nights out and, in my heart, I carry the 'real mum' ... and that's what I'm hoping will keep me going - afterwards. You're not being morbid; just realistic in not wanting her to be defined by the illness.

    Good luck with it.
  9. Canadian Joanne

    Canadian Joanne Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 8, 2005
    Toronto, Canada
    Hi Kate,
    That's how I feel also. Plus, the woman there isn't my mother anyways. I'm assuming when she dies & I have mourned and got over it, I will be able to remember her as she really was.

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