OPINION: Grief that comes with dementia
I WAS doing one of my infrequent home desk clear outs yesterday when I came across a review my daughter wrote last year while doing a placement at a nursing home.
She is in the process of completing a degree in nursing at USQ here in Ipswich.
In this review she spoke about a patient with advanced dementia and a visit by her husband. It was so touching I'd like to share just a few paragraphs.
"He told me about how loving and funny she is and he told me beautiful stories about their life together. He told me what a kind-hearted lady she is, he paused and carefully changed his word to 'was'.
As he did you could see the look of grief come across his face.
Grief is one of the most common responses when a loved one is diagnosed with dementia even though they haven't passed.
They are faced with the loss of the person they used to know and the loss of a relationship.
I have never been exposed to dementia and I have never seen nor understood the impact it had on the lives of others.
My experience has given me a deeper and more personal understanding of this heartbreaking disorder, one that effects so many Australians."
My daughter's words also gave me a new appreciation about dementia and its effects on not only the victim, but their family members as well.
-Editor Peter Chapman