Monday, August 1, 2016

Music Monday - Time


My spouse and I are now the senior residents of our block.  The man who had held that honor has gone to live in a nursing home.


He and his wife had lived next door to the house we've owned for nearly 30 years.  They had been there some 50 years.  Yes, 50 years.  I still wear a necklace he helped my once-young son make me for Mother's Day.  His youngest son, who loved to work with youth, used to spend a lot of time with my son when my son was a teenager.

My neighbor used to cane furniture and make jewelry.  He and his late wife (who was a librarian) raised six children.  He was active in his church and cared greatly for people.  His children are just as caring as he was.

He used to share some of his memories with me, back when he had memories.  His children kept him in the house, with caregivers, as long as they could.  But his dementia had gotten to the point where he refused to eat, to bathe, to let others care for him.  Now, he is adjusting to nursing home life in a dementia unit.


Perhaps it is best that we can not see our future.  I remember thinking, at one time, that we were fortunate to have such caring neighbors.  I remember nights when I was overcome by motherhood, and went over to their house to visit for a few minutes, just to get away.  But both of them were taken by dementia.  His wife first, and now him.

A couple of songs about time.  (Some may take up a lot of your time - come back at your leasure, if you want.)
 Time (Pink Floyd).

No Time (Guess Who) in a version you may not be familiar with.

I'll leave you with one more thought - there is something called music therapy for people with dementia.  I don't know if it was ever tried with my neighbor, but it is intriguing.  Here is a playlist of 15 songs said to spark awareness in people with dementia.

One of them, ironically, is sung by a singer in the last stages of dementia himself, Glen Campbell.

I dedicate this other Glen Campbell song to my former neighbor.

I will not say goodbye, neighbor.  Only Godspeed.

14 comments:

  1. This is the positive and negative of having moved so many times in my adult life. My parents went through this same thing… I will never go through it but I never received the benefits.

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  2. What a lovely tribute to your neighbor!

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  3. Dementia is a real and scary condition for the caregivers of old people. But I wonder how caregivers in institutions manage it. Do old people play up with their families? Or is there really a technique in taking care of the elderly that all of us should know just as we know about child care.....

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  4. at least your neighbour left a legacy - that's how I think you measure a life well lived. And Rhinestone Cowboy always holds a corner of my heart!

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  5. I LOVE your music choices. I am not sure I'd want to know about dementia. Or any bad thing. Only sparkly things!

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  6. It is hard when we watched those we admire or love succumb to an ilness that confounds us.

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  7. We are almost the seniors in our neighborhood. I do enjoy knowing neighbors for decades especially since they have all been great neighbors. My Mother with dementia seems to enjoy singalongs of her generation songs.

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  8. Oh this is so sad and hard for you as neighbours. I'm glad he's being taken care of, Alana. Since we don't have kids, I sometimes worry about what would happen to my husband and I in our later years.
    PS: Had no clue about Glen Campbell. Sad.

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  9. Beautiful story. Thank you for sharing.

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  10. Glen Campbell was part of my days of falling in love. I'm so sorry he has dementia now. My mother did. I lost her little by little, yet at the very end of her life she knew me, she was aware of what was coming. A gift, for sure.

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  11. My sister-in-law's grandmother had dementia issues. It was rough for them. I'll think good thoughts for your neighbor.

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  12. My late father had dementia associated with Parkinson's. It's hard to watch someone you love literally losing themselves.

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  13. Well said, the future is so tricky and something we wouldn't want to know. Thanks for sharing this human story with us. It's always sad to see people afflicted by dementia and such tough times.

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  14. Haven't heard the album version of "No Time" in a while. Thanks!

    Dementia, whether it's Alzheimer's or some other form, is a terrible disease. It's awful watching someone go through it, and the family always feels an obligation to try and avoid putting someone in a home, even though that might be best.

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