I like to think my dog doesn’t believe in the “long goodbye” approach to Alzheimer’s. He practises the “hello again” - which is way more positive.
Our visits vary according to the weather, what’s happening if there is a special concert downstairs or if we’re there when it’s meal time. Hugo sits beside us trying not to be in the way as the care-aides, on their wheelie stools, are busy trying to feed so many. He waits for a spoonful of pureed turkey and spinach.
When the visits are over. I look around for where he dropped his toy. We say our goodbyes. Then head back down the hallways. Hugo is often running by now, holding his leash (if he can’t find his toy) and knowing it’s “elevator” time.
It means we’re leaving the residence that has become our second home.
As I put Hugo back in the car I realize how lucky I am to have a constant companion who remains so cheerful - a family member in his own right ... who helps make the Alzheimer’s journey less of a lonely one.
More Insight and Advice for Caregivers
Original content Mary Gazetas, the Alzheimer's Reading Room