Staying the course

I had a conversation with someone yesterday which set me thinking.  She is in a similar situation to me (not quite but almost) and we were discussing how surreal life can sometimes get when living a life affected by dementia.  The length of time it takes to wash up, the washing up of pots that could go in the dishwasher (one of my pet hates for some reason), the looooong explanations as to why something hasn't quite gone to plan, the sudden realisation that you're watching the fifth quiz show of the evening, the circular conversations that there can seem no way out of.  All of this was the same for both of us and the relief of finding out we weren't alone enabled us to laugh about it.  Then she said something which really made me think.  Following the diagnosis (slightly different in each instance) we made a choice to stay.  This is something I really hadn't thought about but it's true.  Nobody made us decide to see this through, nobody locked us in the house and ordered us to look after our loved ones, we decided for ourselves that this was what we wanted to do and, having made that decision, we researched, planned, considered and are now trying to live life in the best way possible.  There are lots  and lots of people all over the world doing this very same thing but there are others who rail and shout at their person with dementia blaming them and not seeing that they can't help the things they're doing.  As the saying goes 'The person with dementia isn't giving you a hard time, they're having a hard time' and that really is something we all need to remember especially when the going gets tough.   Contented Dementia is the title of a book and the name of a trust but it should also be our aim in life and our focus.   It might not be easy but it seems to me that if we made that choice to stay then, however hard it may be, we should do it with a good heart.  That's what I would want if the situations were reversed, wouldn't you?