When I talked with Peggy this morning...It felt surreal. I know and remember all about us but she doesn't remember. It is like meeting a stranger every day when I talk with her. It is like watching her mind burn to ashes a little more with each call.
She will answer my questions with one word and I can feel that she is still trying to make a connection with me but she just can't.
All of our lives...we have shared. Now, she has nothing to share with me. I hang up the phone and feel a lonely, empty space in my heart where Peggy used to live, alive, bright and funny.
Alzheimer's Disease has pointed its crooked finger at Peggy's mind and like a judge, it has sentenced her to live in a blank space filled with ashes for the rest of her life. Her yesterdays have been burned away and she has no future.
I try to understand what that would feel like. I wonder if she is scared. I wonder if she dreams at night and do her dreams hold all of her memories. I wonder who she thinks that I am when I talk with her every morning.
Losing Peggy makes me so angry..... but Who do I get Angry with????
In my thoughts, I meet the figure of Alzheimer's Disease and stand face to face and eye to eye. I give it my coldest stare and take my fists and punch it until it falls to the ground and disappears just like it is causing Peggy to disappear.
I want to be the super hero who beats Alzheimer's and who protects my little sister, just like I did when we were little.
Peggy was such a gentle person and she would probably shake her head at the anger that I am feeling but I am so angry this morning.
I am Angry that Alzheimer's Disease has, in 3 years, taken Peggy's bright, active mind and reduced it to ashes. It has burned all of her memories of the past, the present and the future. It has blown like a fire storm, with white hot flames through her brain until the Peggy that I knew has only smoldering embers left in her mind.
So again, I ask...Just who do I get angry with when I feel this ferocious, bitter anger towards Alzheimer's Disease and what it has done to my sister?
I cannot stay in this place for long or my anger instead of Alzheimer's Disease would destroy me.
I have found a place to deal with all of this...My safe place is writing about Peggy in this journal.
I Write about how it feels to Watch my Sister...Disappear. I use my writing to sort out my anger, my fear, my frustration and the injustice of it all.
To Peggy, I am a stranger who calls every morning at 10:00am.
For me, I am calling my sister, my forever friend...I call and remember the first time that I saw her little red scrunched up face when I was three years old. I call just to hear the sound of her voice and to hear the sound of her laughter.
I will never be prepared for the morning that I call and know in an instant that the Fire storm of Alzheimer's Disease has completely turned all that she was and all that she could have been... To Ashes.
I Love You Today, Peggy!