My mother was diagnosed with vascular dementia in October 2015 following a series of mini strokes that meant she no longer recognised the home she had lived in for twenty years.
Following the move to a care home, I have been trying to learn how to make her days less anxious than they invariably are. Promoting wellbeing is a huge challenge in the face of a disease that strips away memories. We are the sum of our memories, and we rely on our recent recall to know what to do next. With a deteriorating ability to remember and store new information, my mother frequently becomes confused, distraught and extremely apprehensive.
I decided to start this blog to share my experiences and anything useful that I learn with others, and to provide a platform for people going through a similar journey, to do the same.
To introduce myself and my mother, I start with a short letter I wrote for the Guardian’s ‘A letter to…’ section where readers are encouraged to write the letter they always wanted to write but couldn’t.