Every time I visit my parents’ house, it brings about bittersweet feelings. I’m glad to be able to spend time with them, but seeing my dad fall deeper into his dementia and be forced to succumb to the disease, is heartbreaking in many ways.
This was a man that growing up I saw as strong and in control. He took care of things, made rational and logical decisions, and was a provider. Now, he doesn’t even know how to properly tie his shoes. He has trouble following a conversation. He asks about things we take for granted; “Do I eat with this?” he says, as he points to the fork on the table.
It’s tough to see him worsen almost daily. The disease has completely transformed him into a different man. There are traces of who he used to be still around, but he acts and looks different. It’s frustrating, sad, and at times, maddening. And, there’s nothing we can do.
Photo by Jenny Downing