KATYA’S BLOG

MOM HAS A BOYFRIEND

Elaine had Alzheimer’s and was in the memory care of the facility where I held my weekly picture communication workshops. Elaine thought she was a teenager and had forgotten she was married with two grown children. She had a crush on one of the other residents and called him her “boyfriend.” Elaine and her boyfriend would often hold hands and walk the hallways giggling and whispering to

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THE VEIL

Those with advancing dementia can sometimes experience an overlap of more than one reality like this double exposure photo in this post. I accidentally took this photo while living with Indigenous in Guatemala. It’s an eerie representation of how my time there was like existing in two worlds at once. John was sitting at the window, absorbed in watching a man walk across the street with his

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THE SPACE AROUND US

Something we usually don’t consider is how a healthy brain automatically processes where our body is positioned within the space around us. We are also aware of where our limbs are; how to locate our hand for instance. This ability changes with dementia progression. Space perception enables us to be aware of our body position and objects around us allowing us to move and adjust to the

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SPIRITUALITY DURING DEMENTIA

Spirituality isn’t always about religion. However, belief in something bigger than ourselves and faith that whatever challenge we’ve been dealt is part of a larger picture can help to weather the worst of times, especially after a dementia diagnosis or caring for a loved one experiencing it. I consider myself to be spiritual, not religious. As a child, my enforced Catholicism didn’t stick, and at an early

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CAREGIVER ENERGY DRAIN

A common complaint of those caring for a loved one with dementia is feeling drained. Of course, the 24/7 care is exhausting, but could that “vampire visited in the night” feeling be about something else? What I’m about to write might seem like science fiction, however, it’s actually science fact. Our bodies are not solid. Now, try to follow me on this. Our bodies are actually composed

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CAREGIVER ENERGY DRAIN

A common complaint of those caring for a loved one with dementia is feeling drained. Of course, the 24/7 care is exhausting, but could that “vampire visited in the night” feeling be about something else? What I’m about to write might seem like science fiction, however, it’s actually science fact. Our bodies are not solid. Now, try to follow me on this. Our bodies are actually composed

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TOURISTS WITH DEMENTIA

Most people in earlier stages of dementia are usually still quite functional and many like to travel. It’s not just an “old person” condition anymore; early-onset dementia is affecting thousands of younger people in their 30’s and 40’s and invariably tourism becomes affected. Unfortunately, the tourism industry is unprepared for the problems a tourist with dementia might experience especially if they are traveling alone or in a

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