A Caregiver’s Thoughts On A Presidential Election

vote

The most important thing you can do as an Azlheimer’s caregiver is to remember to vote.

November 2, 2012 – Four years ago, as a dedicated citizen, while living my life as an Alzheimer’s caregiver I participated in the election for a new president. The tall Africian-American stood before the nation, and the world, accepting his win while John McCain conceded and congratulated the winner. We, as a nation, became united once again under the leadership of “our president.”  That’s the way it should be in these United States.

A FIRST

In California the winner was declared almost before the polls were closed.  Even as the votes were counted it wouldn’t have mattered what the West Coast offered in the way of numbers; Obama had won. Crowds cheered for the promised new change while others quietly settled back with a “wait and see” attitude.

“Watch this and listen,” I had coaxed Ken during the campaign whenever Mr. Obama appeared on TV, “he might be our next president.”  “What country is he from” questioned Ken?  I suppose he noticed there was something different about the new contender, but couldn’t quite put his finger on what that difference might be?

After watching the man on TV, seeing how articulate, knowledgeable and capable he appeared I had nothing but admiration for the Senator from Illinois even though he didn’t get my vote.  Once the election was over, however, I said to myself and Ken who could no longer grasp what was happening because of his Alzheimer’s, “It’s time we had a black president.” I wanted so to talk with my husband and exchange ideas – to see if he felt as I did — that the time had finally arrived to embrace all people, from every walk of life, and to treat them equally.  We are, after all, God’s children.  Why not a black president especially one filled with hope for the people and offering such promising change.

ANOTHER FIRST

Fast forward four years and it is again the month to vote for president. A new contender is challenging the president claiming that Obama’s change isn’t what the American people want or need based on many levels of accomplishment — or not — during the past administration.  Now, Mitt Romney is telling us that he has the answers for REAL change.

Governor Romney, who has served in many capacities, including governor of Massachusetts, also claims to be qualified. However, he too is a “first.” Just as John Kennedy was the first Catholic to run, and win, the presidency Mitt Romney is the first Mormon (belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) to snag the nomination.

POLITICALLY CORRECT – OR INCORRECT?

John Kennedy was a Catholic and rich and people cheered. Mitt Romney is a Mormon and rich and some people booed either because he is rich or because he’s a Mormon, or both. In a land where we have honored and admired success and morals, claiming to no longer hold prejudices about much of anything Mitt Romney has been discriminated against with some voters still pontificating, “I will never vote for a Mormon.” Is that a politically correct statement? Or is PC only applicable “sometimes?” Hmmmm.

KEN’S ALZHEIMER’S CONTINUES

Political change and the last four years has had little effect on our home other than Ken’s AD has continued to strip my husband of anything meaningful, including any notion of family memory or relationships. Discussing our political ideas with one another is a missing treasure of long ago. News stories and opinions fall on his disconnected ears so I ponder the future without his input. I miss that connection. Spouses are best friends: someone who shares the same beliefs – or not – but someone we can banter with over everything from meatloaf to haircuts to politics. Then when it’s over we move forward still loving one another, forgetting and forgiving our differences and make the best of whatever the future brings.

NEXT TUESDAY

It seems that “D” Day is upon us once again and November 6th is It with a capital I, and what an election this is going to be. Before Alzheimer’s came along Ken never missed an opportunity to cast his ballot. What would he say about the election? About our current president? About giving Obama another four years? About voting for a Mormon? I am certain he would follow his heart and patriotic commitment which he has held for America since before and during WWII. He would say, “Vote for the man who will do the best job for the country, and vote for the best man regardless of his race, religion or political party.” Even with his Alzheimer’s I still understand my husband well enough to know what he would be thinking about the coming election and how he would vote.

AFTER ALL IS SAID AND DONE

So all of my friends out there, as Tuesday approaches I’ll see you at the polls.  May the better man win and after all is said and done let us “Move forward still loving one another, forgetting and forgiving our differences and make the best of whatever the future brings.”

vote

The most important thing you can do as an Azlheimer’s caregiver is to remember to vote.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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FREE SEMINAR ABOUT DEMENTIA AND ALZHEIMERS FOR SAN FRANISCO BAY AREA RESIDENTS

 

This week (Nov 6 – 8) there will be a number of free presentations entitled “Alzheimer’s Disease: Explored & Explained’ presented by visiting expert Special guest Dr. Laurel Coleman. Again they are free to attend and might be very support & education. This is what Dr. Coleman said she would deliver in this session – that attendees will learn about the right time to make the transition from home, will get to hear the latest research on prevention and treatment, find out the ‘why’s’ and ‘how’s’ of advance care planning and get to learn about the changing demographics of Alzheimer’s disease. She will share ways families and physicians can best work together throughout the disease process, and will answer questions from attendees too, such as how dementia differs from the normal aging process. Here are the details, and a link to more info:

•           Oakland: Tuesday, November 6, at 4:00 – 6:00 p.m., at Mercy Retirement & Care Center,

3431 Foothill Blvd. Please RSVP to 510-228-4725.

•           San Francisco: Wednesday, November 7, at 9:00 – 11:00 a.m., at AlmaVia of San Francisco, One Thomas More Way. Please RSVP to 415-335-4867.

•           San Rafael: Wednesday, November 7, at 4:00 – 6:00 p.m., at AlmaVia of San Rafael,

515 Northgate Dr. Please RSVP to 415-233-6199.

•           Union City: Thursday, November 8, at 9:00 – 11:00 a.m., at AlmaVia of Union City,

33883 Alvarado-Niles Rd. Please RSVP to 510-400-7496.

 

For more info: www.eldercarealliance.org

 

 

Originally posted 2012-11-03 19:04:23.

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