Friday, November 28, 2008

The Essential Truth Of What Is And What Can Never Be

So often one hears of a person who loses his sight, but gains strength in another one of his or her senses: smell or hearing for instance. Is that always the case, or does it depend upon the person and his/her ability or desire to make the remaining senses stonger? This is a rhetorical question, (unless one of my readers knows the answer, of course).

And if it is the case then what happens with other debilitating diseases? Mine, for instance? If the plaque, the tangles, and the shrinkage start to get worse, do I have another ability to "to take up the slack", as it were?

No, I do not, because AD affects the whole brain. Take another "tour of the brain" on and look at all 16 slides, if you care. Note the "normal" brain and the brain of "advanced Alzheimer's". That is one ugly-looking thing isn't it?

So what's left?

What's left is to keep going, keep working, keep hoping and take each day as it comes, hard as that may be for me sometimes. (I know what I'm supposed to do, it's the actual doing it, that's difficult.)

I have noticed a different "attitude" in myself as I relate to my patients - the ones who are non-emergent, I mean. The ones with the asthma, or COPD or chest pain.
I "stay with them" a bit longer now. I smile more at them (I smile anyway, but now in a more "genuine" way and not in a "well how are we feeling today" kinda way, if you know what I mean.) I draw them out in conversations, ask them where they're from originally, how they like it in Georgia if they're from elsewhere. Ask them if they have a stressful job, that kind of thing.

I think it's because I crave their closeness. Anyone's closeness - Tom's on the phone for instance. Y'all on this blog. Julian when I am with him. Bert (my cat) when he's on the bed with me.

Yep, it's been an interesting journey so far.

Till next time, thank you and enjoy the song and the scenes. May it have special meaning for you.



Anonymous said...


Please read my 10/18/08 entry on the message board. I'm still not certain why but I feel more in touch with "people" and "people problems" lately. As I reflect back it seems to me that the increased interest started years prior to my diagnosis. That tells me that my mind might be trying to compensate for the loss of other mental abilities.

Is it all empathy, compassion, survival of my own mind or just the natural aging process? Who knows. I don't really care! I feel it is a positive change and I can accept it. I have faith in my Lord, He loves me and will not give me more than I can handle. He provides opportunities and it is up to me to pick the ones that are right for me. Hopefully we can continue to grow while some of the old clutter falls away. Even though the AD will change things, there are new thing for me to do. It is all good!

Forgive me, I don't want to put a snow job on you. But that is where I get my strength from.

Later dude,


Bill Craig said...


I didn't find a post on the 18th, but did read the one on the 17th. I am so glad for you that you are able to handle all of this, and I admire your strength and thank you for caring enough about me to talk to me on the phone.

But Tom, to be honest (and while I respect that YOU are) I am not into the "God Thing", okay?

I am very much into the "ANGER THING" at this time, and although I also love my so-called "Significan Other" (I am beginning to hate that term), I wouldn't piss on that bitch if she were on fire.

I don't know how to make those two feelings coincide, and I guess they don't really, but my anger needs an outlet and there you go.



Ttom said...

OK Bill!

It is not my nature to preach to anybody at all anyway. Since this disease is completely out of ours and sciences' control it seems to me that...

Please be careful with the ANGER thang! That is what ended my last marriage. She was raped as a child and just buried it in her mind. The repressed thought emerged when she was about 40. We spent the next 10 years with the psyh doctors and they kept telling her that she had to forgive him before she can heal and move on. She never would forgive him and the anger turned on me. You don't need that kind of problem along with the AD.

That put an awful dent in my life. I was very lucky to meet my new wife, Geraldine.