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Music Box

2017 The Longest Day

Music Box

My grandmother lives with Alzheimer's, and she struggles mainly with memory and behavior. Throughout the years as her illness developed, she began to accuse our family members of stealing her belongings, such as her bank identification. In the span of five minutes, she can ask the same question four times, and even when we say "please remember," she can't. She also experiences extreme mood swings - one minute she can be smiling, the next she is either sobbing or throwing a tantrum. 

However, she understands that she is ill and often laments about her bad memory to me. She will come to me and say "my brain is not good right now, please forgive me." This always makes my heart melt; though she has mood swings, she is always caring and loving to me and her other grandchildren. Before the disease, my grandmother was the root of our family and was always on top of whatever she had to do. She cooked wonderfully, and was always there to help us; she would do anything for her family. She was daring and courageous, such as when she flew from Taiwan to America multiple times to care for her newborn grandchildren, despite her inability to speak a speck of English. 

My mother and I only recently got involved with Alzheimer's Association, but we have attended a forum as well as looked into online resources provided by Alzheimer's Association. We have found the statistics especially shocking.  I want people to know that Alzheimer's disease is an incredibly scary disease - it makes you watch the people you love deteriorate. A lot of youth do not understand how Alzheimer's works, because of a lack of interactions with the elderly; I would like younger generations to understand that the need to end Alzheimer's is urgent, and we all need to work collectively towards that goal. 

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