I was first introduced to the Alzheimer’s Association as a Sigma Kappa in college. Our philanthropy was the Alzheimer’s Association and we would attend the Walk as a group each year. Additionally, my Grandmother on my father’s side was diagnosed with Dementia before she passed away. I watched as my parents would visit her about three times a week, and you could see her slowly slip away and additionally become more depressed due to her lack of mobility.
There are few things that still remind me of my grandmother. She has only been gone for a few years, but it seems that the longer that the time goes, the fewer things that I remember. As time moves, I can consistently look at my photos of her, listen to my mom and dad’s stories, and I get little reminders of her throughout my job and my day.
It was hard to watch my Grandma deteriorate, but I was lucky that she did not get as ‘bad’ health wise as others that we know. However, soon enough Grandma would sometimes think that I was “Ela” (her daughter in law that she always viewed as her daughter) Still I stayed, painting her nails (always bright red), learning the stories of my grandfather Bob whom I had never met and reading to her from the Bible, her favorite boo. She would always sing the songs to the word Dream and tell me about how she had her first dance with a boy at her high school dance to that song.
I am always sobered when I think about the things that my grandmother missed. She was influential in my life and was usually there for birthdays and big events. My mom’s family lives in Poland, and I am/was so close to them for my entire life. But Grandma was the only grandparent there for events. She wasn’t able to see my career, and where I was ended up, attend my wedding, meet my Husband, see my parents and my brother grow older, and is not going to be there for other big life events down the road. Birthdays, holidays, and my wedding are hard to think about. I hope that one day, there won't be a world with people like myself that hope for a cure and pray for a way to see their family member be healthy again. Because of this, I walk for a cure in Lafayette.
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