Mental Exercises

Help Elders Develop New Skills and Hobbies

Leah Health Guide June 20, 2007
  • I have taken up photography...It seems to be one of a few things I am still pretty good at doing.  This is our baby robin on his/her first day out of the nest...I love the little pin feathers saying "I'm not quite finished yet..."  Just like me.  I am not finished yet, either, though I have recently been diagnosed with Early Onset Dementia.  I am fifty-eight.  After having always had a genius IQ and been a teacher for over thirty years, it does seem a dirty trick to be played on me!  I have spent some time trying to ignore the problems, the faulty memory, failing IQ, difficulty with names and just plain spelling and typing...my definite lack of attention...  But now, my problem can no longer be ignored because it has a NAME...  I have spent the last couple of years trying to regain some of my loss back by doing word puzzles and games, logic problems...by trying to remember how to spell words...using mnemonic devices to aid my memory.  I have learned to use a Palm Pilot to keep appointments on its calendar.  I can make notes on it...I keep a journal in our home office to record what I need to do and what I have done that day...I made a calendar to help me keep track of all the medications I have throughout the day... 

    But mostly, I have decided to try to create memories for my loved ones.  I use laughter as much as possible.  I tell them I love them and give hugs freely.  I try to get together with them to go shopping or for coffee...  I feel the need to give them some of me...the REAL me...before it is too late.

     

    L.I.F.E. can either stand for Living In Fear Everyday  OR Life Is For Experiencing.  I prefer to experience all I can for as long as I can.  I hope you do, too. Stretch your limits. Who cares if you fail, at least you tried!  Heck, I tried Yoga and crocheting...and I stink at both.  So, I will go on to try something else. I hope you will, too!

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