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HI, MY NAME IS ALICE. 9 YRS. AGO I PUT UPON MYSELF TO MARRY TOM. I AM 36 YRS. OLD AND HE JUST TURNED 80 YESTERDAY. 11 YRS. AGO HIS WIFE PASSED AWAY AND THEN 1 YR. LATER TOM HAD A STROKE AND HIS ADULT KIDS WANTED TO PLACE HIM IN A NURSING HOME. I HAVE KNOWN TOM NOW FOR 18 YRS. I DIDN'T HAVE THE HEART TO ALLOW THEM TO DO THIS SO I WOULD DRIVE 30 MINS. EACH DAY AFTER WORK TO HIS HOUSE TO TAKE CARE OF HIM, COME HOME SLEEP THEN BACK TO WORK. AFTER 1 YR OF DOING THIS I JUST GOT TOO TIRED AND WE DECIDED TO GET MARRIED SO IT WOULD BE EASIER ON ME. OF COURSE MY FAMILY OBJECTED AT FIRST AS DID HIS 4 KIDS. WE HAVE NO CONTACT FROM HIS KIDS SINCE THE MARRIAGE. MY FAMILY GOT OVER IT, HIS KIDS NEVER DID. MY MOM HELPS ME TAKE CARE OF TOM WHILE I WORK FULL TIME AND OUR 9 AND 10 YR. OLD CHILDREN AFTER SCHOOL. I TAKE OVER THE MOMENT I GET HOME FROM WORK,& THE WEEKENDS, BOTH TOM AND OUR KIDS. EMOTIONALLY IT IS VERY HARD ON ME. TOM IS IN HIS LAST STAGE OF ALZHEIMERS AND IT HURTS TO SEE HIM THIS WAY. OUR KIDS DO NOT KNOW OF HIS ILLNESS, THEY JUST THINK "DADDY SLEEPS ALOT." I DON'T KNOW HOW TO TELL THEM. NOW THAT SCHOOL IS OVER I HAVE TO PLACE MY KIDS IN SUMMER CARE BECAUSE I DO NOT WANT TO GIVE MY MOM AN EXTRA BURDEN. I DO PAY HER FOR HELPING ME OUT AND THANK GOD SHE LIVES WITH US. HE IS UNDER NO MEDICATIONS AND HIS DR. TOLD ME LAST MONTH THAT HE WOULD LIVE TO BE 100, THAT'S HOW HEALTHY HIS SYSTEM IS. LAST WEEK HE SLEPT FOR 7 DAYS STRAIGHT. IT WAS HARD TO WAKE HIM TO EAT, I CRIED THE WHOLE TIME, I THOUGHT HE WAS DYING. THEN ON MONDAY HE WOKE UP LIKE EVERYTHING WAS FINE. IT IS A REAL EMOTIONAL ROLLER COASTER. I BETTER STOP NOW, I AM SORRY IT IS TOO LONG.
Original Post
Hi Alice,

As I mentioned in your other post, you can never take up too much time writing.. I think you fears are totally justified especially with the sleep example you described. you aren't expected to know everything.. and unfortunately we learn so much of what is normal for the disease as we move through it.

How old are your children? ARe they yours with Tom?

Katherine Zotovich from www.journalkeepers.com has written a very special book for younger children into their teens with an area on parenting to help your children understand what is going on. It's a remarkable book and you can order it directly from her site.. it encourages the children to write, draw, etc. to express their emotions, fears, etc and what they are feeling. You might want to check into it.. and there are books for you that can help you to better understand what Tom is going through..

just remember, when you are feeling alone, just a gentle touch.. and talking from your heart to his soul will help to ease some of what you are feeling and experiencing.

richest blessings

gail

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