Viewing posts categorised under: Jamies-journey

Jamie’s Journey – Chapter 19

Posted on: August 4, 2016 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
By the time I got back to the hospital, Mom was awake. She was groggy from the anesthesia but she didn’t seem to be in a lot of pain, so that was a relief. Her left arm was in a cast and the right arm had what looked like an erector set sticking out of it, which is known as an external fixator.  

Jamie’s Journey – Chapter 18

Posted on: May 10, 2016 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
Mom was settling in nicely in the new facility. I was still there daily but I was less stressed because she was less stressed. We were coming up on the Memorial Day holiday and I was looking forward to relaxing a bit and maybe even taking a day for myself, and not visiting Mom. My husband and I were discussing options for the weekend that night when my phone rang and it was the receptionist from Mom’s complex.  

Jamie’s Journey – Chapter 17

Posted on: April 10, 2016 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
I called my siblings and let them know we found a new place for Mom and I thought this would be a much better fit for her. They were delighted. My brother said he would fly in to help with the move and packing. Her new apartment was going to be smaller and only one bedroom so we needed to get rid of some furniture and downsize again, so I appreciated the help.  

Jamie’s Journey – Chapter 16

Posted on: March 11, 2016 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
After Mom and I had our mutual breakdown, I pulled myself together and apologized for shouting at her. I did my best to reassure her that I would make everything better. We talked for a while, and I asked her what she wanted to do. She said she didn’t know, but she did not want to stay there any longer.  

Jamie’s Journey – Chapter 15

Posted on: November 19, 2015 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
Lucy the kitten was a Godsend. She was adorable and playful and great company for Mom. But even the joy of a kitten couldn’t stop the degradation of Mom’s brain. Eventually, the calls began again and Mom moved back into a state of distress. The difference was this time the calls were also coming from the assisted living facility staff as well as Mom.  

Jamie’s Journey – Chapter 14

Posted on: October 10, 2015 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
  I took Mom to the vet to see the kitten. She was, as all kittens are, adorable! She had chocolate brown fur and only ½ a tail. She was shy but very sweet and she and Mom bonded quickly. Mom decided to name her Lucy. We brought Lucy home and she was a great distraction and great company.  

Chapter 13 – Jamie’s Journey

Posted on: July 10, 2015 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
Mom tried to be strong and deal with losing Sasha. The journal entry below sums up how hard this situation was for her.
Very bad day – very very bad!!!! Maybe the worst – not sure how to describe it. This is truly my new life now. Many parts of it are great!! BUT, the total lack of independence and lack of control, can’t get out of here when I want to, even just to go to the store! I understand and appreciate all I have but some days are almost unbearable. I carry on as I always have but it gets harder and harder. Some days I just don’t want to go on. I fight but this is hard. Maybe I just miss my cat today. HELP!!!
My body aches-hurts. Always had low energy and fought it but it is much, much harder now. Jamie should not have to do all this stuff for me. Been independent and done everything for so long. This life (nice as it is) seems empty and useless and very lonely and isolated. I am not in charge of anything. Can’t even go to the store for something. Jamie is wonderful but this is about ME, my self. Seems so useless, boredom. My life has been wonderful but also very hard. Not complaining – just saying. I need more gratitude for all I had and have. Have gratitude – but right now it is not helping the pain. HELP! I do not want to be like this. I have always been able to handle anything. What is happening to me? I do not want to live in this state of mind. HELP!Excerpt from Mom’s journal
Mom and I had always talked about everything. We shared all our feelings and worked through every problem or situation by talking it through together. That was how we coped. Mom must have shared these feelings with me in some way, but I didn’t fully understand her pain until I read her journal much later.  

Chapter 12 – Jamie’s Journey

Posted on: June 10, 2015 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
Mom slumped to the couch and nodded, looking at her feet. She didn’t cry or scream — she just sat there.
I told her that she should stay with us for the weekend, and that it would be all right. We could get another cat, couldn’t we? I said other things, too… I tried every lame thing that came into my mind, so long as I thought it might comfort her.
As I made my clumsy attempts, Mom only looked from me to the floor, and back again. She didn’t say a word.  

Chapter 11 – Jamie’s Journey

Posted on: May 10, 2015 | 0 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie’s Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
Mom loved having something to take care of again. Her cat, Sasha, was great company and did a lot to keep Mom's mind off of her memory issues.
One day after work, I stopped by to see Mom as per usual and I noticed that there were stains on the couch and on her bed.  When I questioned Mom about it, she told me that Sasha was having some diarrhea.  I checked the litter box and saw there was clearly an issue.
As I got the couch cleaned up and washed Mom's linens for her, I realized Sasha didn't just have normal diarrhea -- she seemed to be leaking it.  The next day I took Sasha to the vet, who said that Sasha probably just had an infection or mild parasite from being at the shelter.  The vet gave Sasha an injection of antibiotics and recommended some special food.
I'd intentionally not taken Mom with to the vet because I feared it would just make her more anxious, but by the time I got Sasha back to the apartment, Mom was a wreck and had been pacing the whole time we were gone. She had been so worried about her cat and was relieved to have her back home.
That was one of those moments I realized the role reversal was in full swing.  

Chapter 10 – Jamie’s Journey

Posted on: March 10, 2015 | 1 Comments

Note: In 2007, Jamie Wilson Headley (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.
These are the challenges that one woman faced, but although Jamie's Journey is deeply personal, it is also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring someone with dementia.
The increase in Mom’s antidepressants helped. Mom started going to more activities and wasn’t calling me as many times per day. She also made a few friends that she would have meals with. She seemed a bit more relaxed and at ease when we were together and she wasn't always talking about how unhappy she was.
I began to hope things were going to get better and that maybe Mom would settle into her new life.  The Assisted Living facility was really very nice, the staff were kind and there were opportunities for her to do things during the day if she was willing to participate. I think the adjustment for Mom was like starting at a new school.  She needed to get to know the people and the way things worked. I guess I thought this would be easy for her since she had moved and changed schools so much growing up.  Mom had always been able to walk into a room of strangers and make everyone feel comfortable. She had never been afraid of just starting up conversations or joining in and she had always made friends very easily.  



Jamie's Journey

In 2007, Jamie Wilson (founder and CEO of Dementia Services Group) began the complicated process of helping her once-independent mother adjust to life with dementia.

Jamie's Journey is deeply personal, but also universal. We hope that her trials and triumphs will shed light on the emotional and logistical issues that come with caring for someone with dementia.

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