Wednesday, May 18, 2011

So As Not to Forget

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Did You Know..., 5.4 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s. Two-thirds of those with the disease – 3.4 million – are women.

-Alzheimer's Association Official Website

You could tie a ribbon around my finger Dagwood style, write a post-it note, and even buy me a singing telegram but there are just some things that I always seem to forget. i.e. the last load of laundry for the day in the washer, where I put my car keys, whether or not I rolled up the windows on the car once I hear that first rumbling sound off in the distance. I don't know what it is but I just can't seem to do these things and get them right on a consistent basis.

I used to chalk it up to the thing that is endearing in my personality. Perhaps the reason my husband felt he needed to marry me and save me from myself and in that sense he would always feel needed. (Too deep?) I just always looked at it as something I would always probably have to work on and hopefully one day master. But that day has eluded me for 28 years and I don't see it anywhere on the horizon right now. So since it's not something that is fixing itself and it seems to be more recurring than not I figured I needed to take more than a glance at this situation.

And what I realized is that my family tree has a few members that suffer or have suffered from Alzheimer's disease. My grammy on my Papas side suffered from Dementia before she died many moons ago. My father at times is super forgetful. But sometimes he is so on point that I don't know if he's just become one of those prankster type oldies that likes to watch people get nervous when they think someone is losing their minds - you know what I mean? Kind of like, just to get a rise out of us he'll pretend like he won't know what year it is or who is the current President. He will say stuff like that and then in the same breath tell you in rapid succession who the NYC Mayors were starting from '79 to present without even checking the time. So yeah, I hope and pray that in those small moments where he seems not here, that he is messing with us.

To tell you that I'm not scared of that illness jumping on my back and robbing me of all my precious memories would be an absolute lie. Because I am. And with that D.Y.K. opening statistic above affecting so many of us women today, maybe it's your concern as well.

The thing is that with this disease there is no cure once you get it - yet. BUT you can take preventative measures to ward Alzheimer's off for a little while longer. My imagination is now playing out a trainer holding a chair up against a lion yelling "Back! Back rapscallion, back!" just thought I'd share that with you. So here are a few things you can do to keep your brain exercised and to keep the Alzheimer's at bay.
  • Do puzzles. 50, 100, 150, or even 500-1,000 piece puzzles. It will keep your mind guessing and fresh. Thankfully, your local Dollar Tree carries a nice array of them and if you don't have one nearby, might I suggest any random Saturday garage sale?
  • Do crosswords.
  • Do Sudoku.
  • Read a ton of books, magazines, articles on varying topics. Then the water up there won't get stagnant.
Do a few of these things on a constant if not daily basis and your cerebellum will thank you.

My best,

1 comment:

Teresha@Marlie and Me said...

Great tips! My grandma is approaching 90. she does all sorts of puzzles and her mind is sharp as a tack

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