Communication

Elderly-friends

When I was caring for my mom, her doctor suggested to start communicating and meeting mom at her level. Initially you think you are meeting your loved one where they are at, but as time goes on you start to realize that giving decisions, words used, tone, how fast you speak, etc. all play into how you communicate with the person who has Alzheimer’s. Communication is how we relate to one another, how we express our needs, desires and perceptions, tone of voice, facial expressions and body language.

As the disease progresses the communication of the person with Alzheimer’s will  face challenges in expressing thoughts and feelings. The person will be unable to understand what is being communicated as well as lose their ability for verbal expression. These challenges can lead to frustration and anticipating these changes and as mentioned learning how to communicate more effectively, i.e. meeting them at their level will allow you to make adjustments and you as the caregiver, family member and/or friend has to learn a great deal of patience.

Here are some problems that you can anticipate to see at different levels:

  • Difficulty finding the right words
  • Using familiar words repeatedly
  • Describing familiar objects rather than calling them by name
  • Easily losing train of thought
  • Difficulty organizing words logically
  • Reverting to speaking a native language
  • Speaking less often
  • Relying on gestures more than speaking

And the best ways for you to communicate is to:

  • Watch your words
  • Call the person by name
  • Use short, simple sentences
  • Speak slowly and distinctly
  • Patiently wait for a response
  • Turn questions into answers
  • Avoid vague answers

These and other great tips can be found on the Alzheimer’s Association’s site as well as how they break down the different stages, mainly three, Early, Middle and Late. To learn more about the stages click on this link, to learn more about communication tips, signs and how-to’s, click on this link.

 

Pamela

Whoa, wait….I’m still here

keep-calm-i-m-still-here 2

Hey Confessioners…hmm, maybe not the best nickname, but followers, friends and fans of  my blog, I am not lost. I have been going through the changes of life, still figuring out what my life is supposed to look like and yet learning, that in God’s time I will learn what my life is supposed to look like.

All in all, I’m sorry I’ve been so distant while thinking about what to write. I used to write about the caregiver life that was so challenging, but I’ve been echoing, that perhaps this post-caregiver life is a tad bit more challenging. I think it’s because not only do I have to deal with death, and all that comes with losing a loved one, but also what comes with re-creating a life from this loss. And while it may be easy for some, it has been more than stressful for me because I had to uproot and transition a lot in the past few years. Things seem to be simmering down, but there is a part of me that is a bit nervous about because I have been transitional, too transitional.

In the meantime, the blog and the caregiver voice it is becoming has been holding its own and I’m getting compliments, as mentioned made the finalist list again with SeniorHomes.com and some new opportunities have been offered to make my blog a stronger voice hopefully. I’ve also had the opportunity to do some volunteering with the Alzheimer’s Association in NYC and will be a Chair of a Committee to later be discussed.

July’s here, summer’s here….it’s 2014 – part deux, and time to ramp up my efforts and blog, blog, blog.

Sending love and patience to all caregivers and remember in the midst of the Alzheimer’s storm to communicate and meet your loved one where they are at. Stay tuned for some great things to do with a person who has Alzheimer’s.

 

Did it again!….SeniorHomes.com 2014 “Top 20 Blog By An Individual”

Thank-you

A very warm-hearted THANK YOU to my friends, fam, and followers who have supported my blog…Confessions of a Master Caregiver got a score of 44 making it again a Top 20 Best Blog by an Individual for 2014.

Thank you to SeniorHomes.com for the honor as I look forward to rocking this year with information!

 

Pamela

 

 

 

Belated Mother’s Day Wish

Mommy & Me

Yesterday was Mother’s Day, the weather was beautiful, sun-kissed from God. I thought about my mom and how holidays were always special in our home and how much I loved getting her cards and gifts. Now there’s a silence, I still have yet to get over. I know Mother’s Day will never  be the same as I find new ways to honor her and enjoy the day.

I got through yesterday but as I looked to find a poem to place on my Facebook page, oh here come the tears. And I being a poet should have something original, but I will get there. So in honor of anyone who has lost a mom or mom figure I share this beautiful poem, get the tissue!

 

My Mother My Angel

- © Kathy J Parenteau

 

Once upon a time an angel held my hand,

She wiped away my tears and helped me understand.

Our time on earth is brief, there’s lessons to be learned,

Each precious day God gives us another page is turned.

Every chapter full of memories, times of joy and tears,

Triumphs and defeats, through every passing year.

She loved us unconditionally, always by our side,

When no one else would listen, in her we could confide.

With gentle words of wisdom she led us on our way,

Down the paths of righteousness if ever we did stray.

She saw the light in everyone and gave with no regrets,

Always from her heart let’s not forget.

Angels come in many forms, for me it is my mother,

With love I cannot say in words there’ll never be another.

Every day I turn the page in my heart will ever remain,

Everything she taught me as I stroll down memory lane.

Thank you God for giving me the most priceless of all treasures,

Help my Lord to keep alive her memory here forever.

I pray that I can some day be everything she hoped I would,

That’s she smiling down from heaven knowing she did good.

As we gather here today there’s no ending to her story,

Another chapter has begun full of grace and glory.

God’s called her to his heavenly home, part of his great plan,

Although it may be hard, we all must understand.

Faith is what is hoped for, things we cannot see,

Heaven is promised to all of us if only we believe.