Seeing the Beauty of Life in a New Way Through Dementia
I don't know what it is about life that delights me most: the unexpected surprises, the beautiful sunrises and sunsets, the birds and squirrels which play outside my windows. I'm not talking about relationships with people but with LIFE itself. Living with vascular dementia, it would be so easy to concentrate on my disability. But, how I choose to live is a choice for me right now. And I choose to be happy, to look on the bright side. I wonder if my dementia has played a part in the choice I've made. I am sure that at least one of my medications may play a role. But, at this point, I still have the ability to choose how I view life. In the future, who knows what direction my dementia will take. I am pretty sure it will take away my ability to choose how I want to live and view life.
But, what about my relationships with others? I know I have become more bold, speaking out whatever may be on my mind. I'm also not beyond going up to complete strangers. As a matter of fact, I did that today. I know my husband sometimes has a difficult time with me doing this, but today I had a really interesting experience...
For days now, I have been curious about a truck I've seen parked down the road. It has a sign on it: Tom, Trapper of Pests. Each time I saw it I commented on it, wondering what he was trapping so close to our neighborhood. I told my husband that someday I was going to stop and ask what he was doing...only I didn't have any idea that he would stop by my neighbor's house today! What an opportunity! I couldn't let it pass. Of course, when I saw him, my husband and I were going outside to cut and paint a piece of wood...
My husband went to the right toward the shed, and I went left toward the truck which was just backing out of the neighbor's yard. (This kind of flightiness seems to be pretty rampant among those of us with dementia! LOL)
To make a longer story short, let me just say that I met an amazingly interesting gentleman. It turned out that he is a neighbor of my brother, who lives across the Creek. He got out of the truck and showed me the muskrat and two raccoons which he had just caught. I petted all three, even smelled the muskrat which has a slightly sweet smell. I found out that he uses jelly and something else to catch the muskrats! And, what's even better, is that I am actually able to remember all this!
So, this time, my ability to walk up to strangers and just start talking worked out alright.
I haven't always been like this. Years ago, I was very shy. I worked on making myself more assertive; getting older, gaining more wisdom helped. But, so has my dementia. I must say, I am thankful for the role dementia has played freeing me of the shyness I once experienced. I've met some interesting people and learned so much in the passing.