Friday, December 5, 2008

tales of greatgrandmother

My grandmother is 90 years old and lives at the Alzheimer's unit of St. Catherine's. She is generally pleasant to be around but asks the same questions over and over even in the same conversation which can get old. She always seems to know me, but doesn't remember much short term and even mid long term stuff seems to be going. She's a good faker so I'm not always sure. But then she'll sometimes surprise me.

Aubrey has been out to see her twice - once in late October and once last week. I always talk to Granfran about her, but I don't know how much sticks. When I was visiting her this week I took her a picture of Aubrey's last visit.

Granfran would ask me what's going on (she always says "out in the world"), and I would talk about Aubrey. She'd then ask when she would get to hold her. So I would show her the picture again and say that we visited last week, and we will again. Granfran would ask, "Is it a boy or a girl." Girl. Then "What's her name." Aubrey. And then Granfran would say, "Oh yea, Aubrey Noel." This literally happened 4 or 5 times while I was there. I have no idea how or why she remembers that her middle name is Noel. We don't ever use it so I doubt that it's from the repetition that Aubrey always leads to Noel. Very odd.

Another funny thing - in the same visit we were looking at some pictures of my sisters. Granfran asked where they were and I told her. Then she asked if they were married. I said yes and turned to a page showing them with their husbands, and Granfran said their names. So she doesn't remember that they're married, but she knows the husbands' names. Memory is a strange thing.

David Howie

No comments: