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When You Love Someone Who Has Dementia

A little headache. I’m wondering if it’s barometric pressure. A sunny day, then boom! a cloud and sudden splats of rain, then the downpour. Yesterday I was drenched walking back to the car at Walmart. Memorial Day weekend. The parking lot, filled to the brim. And what was I thinking, going to the store before my meeting? Magical thinking. I needed a couple of things, and Walmart was on my list. I thought I could make it in and out of the store and then move on to my meeting before the rain hit. Wrong. I made it to my meeting but arrived as a drowned rat. They laughed. I laughed. Then we got down to it—the stressors, concerns, worries, how to cope. At Searching for Light Group (a group of peo

Our Town

Pioneer Days in Norfork, Arkansas, population 511. The town stretches a mile or so down the main street with post office, grocery store, café, thrift store, and food bank surrounded by mountains in every direction. Norfork is in the North Central part of the state and isolated from big cities. It takes a big plan to go to a Sam’s store, Best Buy, or Barnes & Noble. Even bigger, it takes an adventurous spirit to sail around curves and mountains in a vehicle every day, choosing to drive into Mountain Home for work. But when these folks return home, they snuggle in among their mountains and rivers. Norfork is small and somewhat cut off, but, unlike many such towns, it is not dying. We have smal

Facing Old Age Takes Courage

No one tells you when you get there. No one says: You are now entering the gate of Old Age. I guess we’re just supposed to figure it out for ourselves. Guess what - it’s sort of a surprise. Maybe because we didn’t expect to get here. It takes great courage to face it. Most of us survived this long by jumping many hurdles. We made it, but not by accident. I can no longer fool myself into thinking anyone can reach this age. I’ve lost many friends and relatives along the way. No accident if you reach old age. Like warriors, we are not that far from death at any point. Death can take any of us at the turn of a wheel or the onset of a disease. Warriors fighting for their homeland hope to go home

A Strange Time for This Mom

We were living in emotional turmoil. My first husband and I were separated at the time. I was busy being a mom and teaching sons to sit up straight, not play with their food, write a thank you note, not interrupt when someone was talking, to wait to eat until after the food had been blessed. I did not need my fifth-grade son balking about getting dressed up to go to church on Sundays. It was the 80’s. He was comfortable with blue jeans and with balking. To be honest, I was dealing with headaches and really wanted to recoil from the world. It was a strange time. It hurt that our son was unhappy at church. The spiritual support I was receiving at the church was getting me through a hard season

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