Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Prayer for a Cure for Alzheimer's

Each of these lapel pins represents a memory I pray I can keep.    
My mom has Alzheimer's.  Near the end of his life my dad exhibited signs of dementia.  His sister died of Alzheimer's.  Both my maternal grandparents had "hardening of the arteries" and "senile dementia," terms used to describe the forgetfulness experienced by the elderly before Alzheimer's disease was widely recognized.

Of course I worry about forgetting. 

I was cleaning out a drawer this afternoon and unearthed a little plastic container filled to the brim with brightly enameled lapel pins, about 20 in all.  I poured them into my hand and memories began to flow.  The Kansas shaped Reading Recovery pin evoked the strongest emotion; I felt I made the most positive impact on children's lives during my years as a Reading Recovery teacher.  Running a close second was the golden circlet shaped like children holding hands. This brought back memories of years of playground duty.

I've taken to carrying a trash sack with me whenever I clean a room, in order to encourage myself to throw away things I don't need.  I held the pins in my hand a moment, but made no move to deposit them in the plastic garbage bag at my feet.  After a moment or two I put the pins back into their container and returned them to the drawer. 

If only I could hold onto my memories in this same way, tucking them safely away into a protected corner of my mind with certainty I can retrieve them whenever I want... 
Please join me right now in a prayer for a cure for Alzheimer's:  Dear Lord, we pray that Alzheimer's is defeated within the next few years, so this disease that has stolen so many memories becomes only a memory. Make it a defeated enemy with no more power to rob us of our independence and the ability to understand and reason.  Banish this disease in order to keep us from inflicting on our loved ones the agony of that long goodbye.  Free our children of the threat of this disease. We ask this in the name of our precious Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who will never forget us, even if we forget, who will never let go of us, even if we forget how to hold on.  Amen

Scripture:  "Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you!" (Isaiah 49:15). 


  1. Very touching read.

    I have members and friends husbands who had this terrible disease.

    I just prayed for the same thing you asked for. May there be a cure.
    Thanks for sharing this touching blog.

  2. What a beautiful prayer, Linda. I prayed it right along with you.

  3. My Mom had Alzheimers I did not mention that before my first comment. I was a caregiver for her . I had my own family to look after and I would go back and forth to my Mom and Dads home and then prepare supper also for them. Stay and hour and then head home to my own family after. She has been dead many years but reading all your blogs. I can so relate to all you have written.That was me.You never know how much you miss them until you see the vacant chair even in your mind. I am still reading your blogs and I followed you as a blogger friend to join at beginning . Now it has been more these days to come back and read what I have missed in your blogs. I was brought back here again and am really seeing more of things about me and people and others who have parents with Alzheimers.
    That was wonderful you could write a book. I liked what you wrote of the awarness of what one can see with the way they act and the way in your heart you should respond. I sure could of used your help back then. The bath part was hard for me. Even the care as other siblings felt a visit to Mom was enough and to bring her food but them as I was doing the meales. The food bringing to Mom was way too much as she could not eat all that and it would of been better to be useful another way. How many times I had to bite my tongue as not to cause too much confliction.

    I sat reading all your blogs yesterday and today. I so loved how you put your scriptures in for references to read along as I read your blogs.

    God Bless you.