Parental Journal 114 from Planet Elderly: This Is Your Life via Photo Album

Thursday, September 10, 2020 – early afternoon

The twice-a-week visits with Mom are going well. We meet at about 11 a.m. on Mondays and Thursdays and visit for 30 minutes. We are both enjoying them.

Although it took a long time, I finally got around to sorting through boxes and envelopes of old photos. I went through them three times before I was able to reduce them to a chosen group with which to make a photo album of Mom’s life. The album is large, so when I took it to share with Mom, I gave her individual pages so that she could more easily view the photos.

Mom is looking at a page from the photo album

Overall, she was very curious about the photos and did not recognize most of the people in the photos. There was one photo she saw and she immediately said, “That’s my brother.”

I did not include photos of her first husband, Walter, who was my biological father. I’ll put those in the album I make for my life. That said, at one point I mentioned Walter’s name and Mom quickly said, “I don’t think I was ever married to Walter.” All I said was, “Oh…okay,” and I let it go. When she saw a photo of her and my stepfather, Victor, she said, “I don’t think I ever married Victor.” I just showed her the next photo of their wedding day. She looked a bit perplexed, but she did think the dress was “very pretty.”

Here are some of the album photos my 94-year-old mother with dementia has seen recently…for the very first time, according to her.

Mom’s mother’s wedding: Jeanette and Arthur Peters. Jeanette and Arthur had three children, but their marriage didn’t work out.

Mom as a toddler:

Mom, left, and her older sister, Martha:

Love poem I think Victor typed for Mom:

Wedding Day – 1954
Wedding day: Mom, Me, and Victor

Photo of Mom on her honeymoon:

About jjmummert

Just another voice in the wilderness from someone who's lived on this planet for over 70 years and faces permanent residency on Planet Elderly. Update: As of March 2, 2017, I turned 70. I'm now an official resident of Planet Elderly. Dad passed away September 22, 2016. In late March 2017 I was able to move Mom closer to me where she resided at a memory care assisted living community until being downsized to a skilled nursing senior community in October 2018 in Columbia, Missouri. I view the Parental Journal entries as part therapy, part family history, sort of a case study of our family's journey with dementia. It's quite an adventure. Recommended readings for others who have loved ones who live with some form of dementia: The 36-Hour Day; the website: https://www.agingcare.com/ ; https://www.alz.org/
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