Friday, August 17, 2012

Fronto Temporal Dementia

I just want to write a quick post about how disease, illness and cancers can affect not only the person diagnosed, but the family as well. My step mom has been diagnosed with FrontoTemporal Dementia (FTD) last November. I call her my step mom here just to note that we aren't blood related, as this does have somewhat of a hereditary factor. (I do worry about my half brothers and sisters, though!) She has been my mom and main caretaker from the time I was 3 years old, until as an adult, she became my confidante and friend.

FTD is not characteristic of Alzheimer's and age-related dementia. It is different, and usually hits people at a younger age than you would normally think. My mom is only 62. She was the one who got me interested in natural health when I was younger. She would tell me that since my mom died of cancer at the age of 31 (she was diagnosed when she was pregnant with me), I better take extra good care of my own health. If it weren't for her, I would never have started Purify Your Body.

We abruptly uprooted ourselves from MN to move to UT, to be closer to my dad to help out where we could.

Yesterday we had another appointment with the neurologist, to follow up. I don't know what I was expecting, but my dad for sure was hoping the doctor would tell him they found a miracle cure, or some way to stop the progression of this disease. He really wasn't ready to hear that there was no cure, no way to stop it or slow it down. Needless to say, he is in deep mourning. He lost his first wife to a 3 1/2 year long cancer battle, and now, 35 years later he is facing a different kind of battle -- watching his wife slowly decline mentally. Maybe quickly, not slowly, as she is now to the point where she has to concentrate hard to remember your name.

We don't know what to do, what to expect, and how we are going to cope. Life really throws you curve balls sometimes. I wonder if she had too many heavy metals in her body. She never chelated or detoxed herself. Whenever I would give her supplements or even my detox foot pads, she always gave them away to someone who needed them more than her. She was so kind and generous.

As we fight this battle, I pray that none of you have to go through anything like this. She is now in a moderate stage of the disease. Her attention span is so short, and she is starting to adamantly refuse to do things like showering. But, she is happy. She laughs a lot, she dances, and giggles. She is still a very beautiful woman. And she is healthy, too. Except for the brain atrophy in her frontal and temporal lobes.

So, my whole point of writing this is to tell you that this affects all of us, as her family and loved ones. It is hard for us. I don't know what else to write, because most everyone knows how hard it is for the family members when a person is ill. I just needed to get this out, maybe to help me mourn.

Be thankful for every minute, every day you have with your loved ones.

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