Will you still have your memories in 10 years? Will you remember your loved ones? Will you recognize the faces of your children? In 10 years, how many of you won’t remember a single event up to this point in your life? Getting married? The birth of your children? How many of you will have your parent look at you, and not know your name? Gut wrenching to think about, I know. Alzheimer’s is so much more devastating that you can imagine.
Many of you know about my support of the Alzheimer’s association. I just wanted to take a few moments to share why it’s so important. If anything, please just read this so I can help bring awareness to Alzheimer’s.
I have wonderful memories of my dad. WAY too many to list. They are what I cling to on difficult says since he’s been gone. I want these memories FOREVER!
My dad’s battle with Alzheimer’s disease ended on 05/12/2015 at the young age of 64. Reliving losing my dad is scorched in my memory and is accompanied by an anguishing pain. There is a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes every time it comes to mind, which is often. My life changed at that very moment. But at that same time, he didn’t need to struggle anymore. He was free from the imprisonment that Alzheimer’s has on its’ victims. He fought bravely with every bit of his strength up to his very last breath, literally. To be witness to his struggle was painful, emotional, and nothing short of gut wrenching. It’s a cruel way to lose your life and nobody deserves it.
It’s only been a little over 4 years since Alzheimer’s took my dad’s from me. But it’s 4 years that he deserved to be a part of. Four years and there has been an empty chair at every ballet recital, every birthday party, every holiday, every cheer game, etc. There's been an empty spot in every photograph. Every card that should be signed with his name. He’s missed all of it. His phone calls have gone silent. The only way I will hear his voice say “Hey Kate, it’s Dad” again is on recordings, that will forever cherish. All because of Alzheimer’s.
Right now, if you receive an Alzheimer’s diagnosis…there is no hope. There is nothing to slow Alzheimer’s and nothing to stop it! It WILL take every single life of every person that has it takes control of. NO HOPE. We need to change this. I want my memories FOREVER. I want my loved ones to have theirs FOREVER. Nobody should be robbed of these through this merciless disease.
Right now, the only thing the Alzheimer’s association can do is provide support, while pushing hard for more hope. It’s quite the difficult job but they are great at support. They help you become more aware of how the disease will/could progress and how to prepare yourself for it. How…you may need to take the mirrors down in your house because they don’t recognize themselves anymore and have been known to put their fists through mirrors, thinking the reflection is an intruder. How… you may have to disguise your entry doors to look like book cases, because they try to leave to “go home” so frequently. How… their brain will separate from their body and they will likely lose the ability to swallow and will likely die from pneumonia from secretions they can’t swallow. These are GUT WRENCHING things to hear about the affects of the disease that will take your loved one.
This is the Alzheimer’s reality. And we need to change it. We need HOPE. We need research. We need trials. We need medications. We need resources for people and loved one’s enduring this disease (which is a 24/7, 365 day job). Please help me fight for hope! I need your help.
To honor my Dad's battle and to fight for those that don’t yet know their fight is coming, I have committed to fighting this awful disease with the help of the Alzheimer’s Association in the “Walk to End Alzheimer’s”. This year I am participating as a walker but I’m also on the Volunteer Committee.
I am asking that you take my Dad's story to heart. Let it sink in. Know one day Alzheimer’s could affect you. Help me fight NOW. Help me provide HOPE. Please help me by DONATING to this wonderful organization or JOIN US on October 6th in the McHenry Walk to End Alzheimer’s or at the very least, please SHARE . I thank you all from the bottom of your support through my dad’s journey and now, when the fight will continue.
Thank you for joining the movement! The end of Alzheimer's disease starts with you.
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