The combination of Dotty and Alzheimer's never cease to amaze me.....By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room
Since May 18 when Dotty woke up sick and unable to move she has had trouble walking. For a few weeks we were using a wheelchair. Finally, we reached the point where Dotty could move around the house, for the most part, without assistance.
She has not been able to walk on her own with assistance from the house to the car.
As we were driving, I decided we would stop off at the supermarket and pick up a few items. I said to Dotty, are you going in? She wouldn't talk. She just shook her head. I asked a couple of more times and she still wouldn't answer.
As I was heading into the store from the parking lot I thought to myself, she is going to go for it. I have no idea why this thought came into my head.
I went into the store and the first thing I did was buy some lottery tickets and scratch offs for Dotty. Then I decided to look out of the window of the store. Sure enough, Dotty was slowly but surely making her way to and into the store.
She came in the door and the first thing she did was grab a cart. This surprised me. She took the cart and made her way over to where they sell the lottery tickets. I was standing about 20 feet away watching the whole thing unfold. I wanted to see what would happen.
Dotty starts talking to the girl that sells the lottery tickets. The next thing I know, Dotty starts unloading the pockets full of change she always carries around when we go out. She usually has about $8-10 worth of change in her pockets. The girl starts counting the change and Dotty starts getting lottery tickets and scratch off tickets. The girl at the counter had a nice smile on her face and was being very sweet to Dotty.
Dotty finished her business, put all of her excess change back in her pocket and did an about face. She then grabbed back on to her cart and was using it as an elderly person would use a walker.
I circled around and got in front of her so that I was walking toward her when she saw me. I smiled, Dotty smiled. I asked her, what did you get? I don't think she knows they are called lottery tickets and scratch offs, so she took them out of her pocket and showed them to me.
She bought two cash three tickets. One was 6-2-9. Easy to understand, her birthday. She also bought 5-3-0. No idea on that one, she never bought that number before. If you are superstitious, you might want to buy that number.
I took Dotty's hand and we headed back out to the car. Dotty was like a new person, she was in a good mood. She was even walking better.
Now lets put this in context. When I first came to Delray Beach to try and figure out what was wrong with Dotty she was falling down all the time.
Right after I arrived Dotty started to get meaner and meaner. She said things to me I never heard before in my life. It hurt.
Lets skip ahead 80 months. Well you know the story I just told it.
Somehow Alzheimer's caregiving can make you feel really happy.
I really enjoyed typing out this story, but not nearly as much as I enjoyed living it.
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Bob DeMarco is the Founder of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. Bob has written more than 2,200 articles with more than 274,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.
Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room