The decline in skills continues

Yesterday morning Ash noticed the rinse aid in the dishwasher needed topping up which has always been one of his jobs.  He did at least know where to pour the liquid but had to come and ask me which liquid he needed.  He knew 'rinse aid' but couldn't equate it with the bottle displaying the words 'rinse aid' in large letters on the front.  Then I mentioned the screen wash needed topping up in my car and he immediately leapt to his feet and went to find it.  That bit was fine but when he got out to the car he had to come and find me to ask where it needed to go and whether he had to add anything to it.  This might seem a very minor thing but for 37 years he's been the person in the house with responsibility for our vehicles.  Topping up screen wash has been amongst the very least of those responsibilities and explains why the questions came as a shock.  We both recovered from these two episodes and I've now mentally added the tasks to the ever growing list of things I need to learn to do.  The good thing is that as Ash's skills diminish mine increase and I have high hopes that soon the only times I won't be able to take his place is with anything which requires physical strength and that's something I have no control over.

And so we move ever further into this dementia lark sometimes muddling through and sometimes in control but I do find I have to watch myself to make sure it doesn't take over.  This morning I reached for Ash's hand to find no response whatsoever.  In the past this might have signalled some sort of distress on his part but today it just meant a total lack of emotional attachment.  For a brief moment I felt grief threatening to overwhelm me but then I could almost see myself physically batting it out of the way and I realised that I've become so tired of it having the upper hand that I'm more determined than ever to make the most of the life I have.  As a result I got up and dressed ready to start the day with a walk in the sunshine where a friend and I tried very hard to put the world to rights.  In Britain at the moment that's not an easy thing to do but we're nothing if not optimistic.

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Jan said…
I am a couple of years further down the line, I actually have my own tool box...only thing I haven't got is a hard hat!
Take advantage of the fact you can still pop out for some respite, one thing for sure no two days the same & we are all learning on job
Jane said…
I'm definitely making the most of the current opportunities for respite Jan and am watching and waiting for the chance to get my own toolbox. At the moment thought Ash, if not quite as capable as he was, is still able to have a go at most things and I find that if I even so much as think about doing something myself he manages to focus long enough to get a job done. I do have my own screwdriver set though!
Emjayar said…
I have my own tool box!  Today I put up two wall lights.  At the weekend I had my plumbers hat on and tackled a boiler error.  I drive us everywhere we go, make all the decisions, negotiate all the renewals, take care of finances. I'm allowed to do all the above without question. Most days I need to chivvy T along as, left to his own devices,  he would take all day to shower and dress.  It's heart breaking, backbreaking, mentally and physically exhausting.  I take some comfort in knowing I'm not alone in this!
Jane said…
I'm so impressed with the wall lights and a picture would be good so I can see what I'm up against! I agree that this whole thing is heart breaking, back breaking etc but the thing I take comfort in is not only that I'm not alone here but that I can do all this. You have no idea how much my self esteem has grown over the past two years and I still haven't attempted wall lights or boiler repairs.