I have not posted much recently because I’ve been caught up in a flurry of moving preparations (although the move is months away), arranging repairs and renovation at the new house, starting the process of getting rid of stuff at the old. And in that flurry I have probably not been paying as much detailed attention to Ralph as usual. But we just spent half an hour together in my car after dropping his car to be serviced. In that time we had this exact same conversation close to ten times, approximately every two to three minutes:
What else do we have to do today?
Dr. Ling at 1.
What time will the car ready for us to pick up?
They’ll call us when it’s ready.
Should I leave the dogs locked up?
Yes, because we have a doctor appointment.
I’m used to the repetition of course. But it seems to have become more intense lately. I casually asked him whether he’d noticed any changes in his memory.
No. Have you?
Yes, I said then caught myself so added to soften the blow,
But then again my memory is worse too.
In fact, it is worse and I worry frequently about a factoid I read early on—that Alzheimer’s caregivers are statistically more prone to develop Alzheimer’s than the general population. Every time I lose my keys, cell phone, or someone’s first name I do panic a little. And to my dismay, those occasions are increasing.
But Ralph loved my answer.
Well, that’s not going to be good, he laughed. We’re going to be rambling around the house saying “Who Are You?” to each other.
Yep. I forced my own laugh, thinking of the changes I am making in our new house to make it both wheelchair accessible and generally easier for caregiving down the road. Ralph is not ready to think about that possibility in a real way, but I have to. Just writing that makes me realize why my anxiety level has been high and why I have been avoiding posting here—the act of moving brings our future into stark, unavoidable relief.