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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Science News Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I subscibe to Google Alzheimer Alerts for help in writing this blog and what I found today really intrigued me. On Maria Shriver's website, she posted an article by Dr. Stephen Hume, a psychologist who was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer's disease six years ago. He describes being on a vacation and realizing his perception of sight, colors and smells has been affected by his illness. He documents how his thinking has become more linear and feels grateful that his insights about his losses are short-lived. He forgets about them!
Dr. Hume is blessed by this lack of anxiety. My husband experienced his recognition of losses due to Alzheimer's disease progression very painfully and his current peacefulness seems to reflect this loss of awareness. Now Bob says he is "delighted each time I find you here" each day when I visit and he seems to be completely unaware of the time in between visits.
As people are diagnosed much earlier, they are able to participate in their lives with Alzheimer's disease and to benefit from insights about community, family and the creativity that is still possible when some symptoms of Alzheimer's disease are already present. I look forward to reading more of Dr. Hume's writings to gain further insight into his disease progression, although we must always keep in mind that each person has an individual path through this process. What strikes me now, is how we all must realize we are loved for who we are, not for what we achieve.

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