Alzheimer’s and Marriage

I have wanted to write a post like this for some time now, but it very personal.  I just wasn’t sure if this is something I wanted to put out there.  But it’s Alzheimer’s, it’s this disease and it’s what I work through every morning when I wake up for school and leave Curt sound asleep at home and head off to school with out him.

Yes with out him!

That is what is so hard these days, we are married, we are a partnership, we are friends…..but as of late there are so many decisions, events, happenings…just life that I am living with out his input or involvement.

That partnership is dissolving and I am forging on ahead with out my sweet husband!

He becomes more and more oblivious to what is happening with in our household, he is more apathetic, and spends most of the day at the computer or occasionally watching the news or sports events.  He seems to relish time to himself and peace and quiet.

I try to get him involved with activities, he will linger for a bit, but finds more comfort in his daily, simple routine.

It’s a slow, grieving process, that each day seems to chip away a bit of our marriage.  I am painfully aware that he is not with us when we go places and that we are losing dear Curt as he slips more and more into the big black hole of Alzheimer’s.  He may be physically with us for something, but I can assure you the Curt that is with us, is not the same fun loving, active, involved, Curt that I have known for 22 years now.

(I just had to post this OLD pic of Curt, but as you can see he was such a fun loving, goofball Dad!!  He let the kids duct tape him to a tree!!!!)

As I was pondering much of this in my heart, I read the words below at a dear friend’s blog.  Her husband has had numerous surgeries for a brain tumor that has also caused endless seizures.  Her thoughts seem to reflect much of what I have been feeling.  So  I am going to borrow Helen words from Mom of Six 

” There is peace in my heart, we have times of laughter, I am thankful to God for so many things but life is not as it once was and it’s not as it should be.  God created Adam and Eve in that garden as perfect humans.  There was not cancer, pain, sadness, sin.  But when sin entered the world all of that changed.

And yes, I believe God is sovereign over all.  I believe that He uses ALL things for our good, even brain tumors, BUT they are a result of the fall and one day…oh one day…it will be different.  

Rev. 21: 1, 3-4 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea…And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them.  They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.  He will wipe every tear from their eyes.  There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”  

Amen.

Phew, thanks Helen for helping me put some order to my scattered thoughts and ever shifting emotions!  We press on for there is Hope in knowing there will be a new Heaven and a new Earth, and Curt will be made new and whole again!

I do have a big prayer request to mention.  Curt still struggles with the anger issue, it really has not gotten any better, I think I have just grown more numb to it all and have not let it consume me as it once did.  But we must find him a local neurologist.  We had planned to see an excellent neurologist in Hershey, but his practice is moving to NY.  Thus I am back to starting over.  So please pray that I can find someone local ( I do have a few names to call), that Curt will be willing to go, and that we can get in soon!! (I am afraid that will be the hard part!!)  Curt really needs some kind of med to help with the anger.  The things he says is just NOT HIM and I am the one he blames for everything.  I am glad it’s not the kids, but I do grow weary of it.  Tough to listen to!

Thanks friends and readers, I can not tell you how blessed we are by so many of you!!!  Can I just tell you how stinkin nice the people of this community are!  We have been blessed with meals and so many little acts of kindness!!  <3  We are thankful!

I also have a fun praise that I will post soon…….it’s a story of God’s providence for us through a lawn mower! :)  But that will have to wait for another day.

~Sandy

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17 responses »

  1. Sweet friend, my heart hurts for you. I have thought about you so very many times and wondered how you were holding up with all of these little things that you are having to take care of now. It is so hard when he is there but not there, isn’t it? How I wish that we lived closer together. Sending you a big hug.

  2. Dear Sandy, you have such courage. I admire you. The grace the Lord is giving you during this most difficult time is evident in your writing. My Dad is going through the same things you described. It is heart wrenching. Thank you for sharing your experiences and your prayer needs. Lifting you up to the One who will give you all you need to go on. Love, Joan

  3. Dear one. I could hear and feel your sadness and loneliness…especially the loneliness. I have no words of comfort. You know where to go to find the words you need. The words that only He can provide. But I do send you my love and prayers, as one sister in Christ to another. I look forward to us meeting in real life…SOON! Shawn will be at Longwood another semester and so we will have August-December to connect in real life somewhere between Farmville and Lynchburg. Hugs….

  4. Sandy…everyone in my group is praying for you all. Please know that! And you have such faith!! It is a difficult journey you are on but like you said…..someday he will be made new!! I know it’s hard to cling to right now….it would be for any one!! I am lifting you up daily dear blogging friend…..i pray the peace of Christ and comfort. I am also praying that the neurologist search will be fruitful and timely. Love to you dear sister in Jesus!

  5. I’ll pray that God leads you to exactly the right doctor for Curt. I can only imagine the things you and the kids are facing with him. I love the old picture! Hold on to those dear memories and remind your kids often of the wonderful times they have had–even the ones they were too small to remember themselves. Those memories will be a gift to them, something they can hold onto when the present seems overwhelming. As your friend said, this is only temporary. Someday God will restore all things as they should be.

    In so many ways, I long for that myself. :) Hugs

  6. It’s so hard to read this, but I am so glad that you wrote it. Please don’t give up hope. I think of you guys often. I remember so many great times in high school and college hanging out with Curt talking about the Lord, who is the same today as then. Romans 8:28 is still in the Book.

  7. You are forever in Chuckie & my prayers. You are such a warrior for Curt..and the courage you show is just amazing. I myself know that there are nights where you feel so weak and are not sure if you can get through the day. BUT that is when you need to stand on tiptoe and call upon God for even more strength to endure whatever the next day will bring. You have so many people surrounding you with love and prayer. We will continue to ask God to lift up your family as you go through different circumstance. Sending much love.

  8. Oh how my heart aches for you, Sandy. :-( I am glad you shared this. It helps us know how to better pray for your needs. I love the wedding picture too. I can see both of you in it. :-)

  9. How I just want to give you a big hug, Sandy! My heart cries for you. You are so courageous in sharing these hard parts but it really brings us who have no idea some small understanding . Please know I continue to pray for you and Curt and your kids.

  10. Sam, I will pray that you find a good neurologist quickly. It is important that he gets that care and you too. Keep setting your mind on things above where your life is hidden with Christ in God. I love you, Ann

  11. Sandy, I truly know what you mean about everything you wrote. My thoughts have been in the same direction lately. One of my blog friends whose husband passed of EOAD in February said that along the path of Alzheimer’s, it’s sort of like being a married widow. I felt that was a fairl accurate description, and your friend, Helen, said it very well also. We still love our husbands, and we will be with them through it all, but the partnership is pretty much gone. My prayer for you is to find a doctor who can help find the medication that calms the anger. That has been a very frustrating part of this battle with my husband….finding the right medication at the right dosage. Peace and love to you, Sandy.
    kathy in Texas

  12. I can’t even begin to imagine what you’re going through. I stopped to think about how much I depend on my hubby through the day, and how many decisions I go to him for. I just can’t imagine not being able to do that…to have him physically here, but not mentally. Prayers going out for your strength!

  13. Sandy- I have thought about you over and over. I think about offering help but I thought things were under control so I didn’t want to seem to pry into your life. Tonight I found out that things are not as settled as I had thought. I will pray for you every day and am willing to do whatever I can to help you and Curt. I just tonight found out about your blog. Jan Wynkoop

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