Once upon a time, I had only a vague concept that there were people who had something called dementia. I knew it was one of those sad things that was out there in the world, but it didn’t effect me or my family, so I didn’t bother to learn about it.
Then my dad developed dementia. I became responsible for his care and well-being . . . And I became frantic to learn as much as possible as quickly as possible.
There was a ton of information to learn about insurance, medical terms and a variety of legalities. Even more pressing though was that I had to learn new rules about communicating and dealing with my dad.
Very often, I felt like I’d been dropped off in a foreign country with no map or knowledge of the local language. The name Passport2Dementia was inspired by that sense of being a stranger in another world.
I started Passport2Dementia to make it easier to share information with friends and family about my dad’s condition. I kept it going for several months but then had to take a break while things with my dad (and with my own health) became overwhelming.
The break turned out to be more than a year and a half long. During that time, my dad died. At the same time, my need to learn about dementia (and other elder-care issues) turned into a passion to help others. I am relaunching Passport2Dementia in loving memory of my dad and the journey we stumbled through together during the last years of his life.
One purpose of this blog is to share some of what I learned (and what I’m continuing to learn) about dementia and how to deal with it. My other purpose is to encourage people who have loved ones being lost to dementia . . . To help them look for and appreciate the blessings in this difficult journey.
I’m not a doctor or any kind of dementia “expert” – just a daughter who wanted to learn everything I could about my dad’s illness so I could support him through it. And now I pray that this blog helps others as they journey with their loved ones through the world of dementia.