Dementia: A Very Lucky Break Indeed

Good fortune has shone on us this morning: we’ve had a very lucky break.  Maureen  woke up thinking of a school trip to Germany from over 60 years ago.  I have kept that conversation going to consign the events of yesterday afternoon to the dustbin: along with shattered keepsakes.

We were both tired yesterday after several nights of broken sleep.  When Maureen lay down to rest her eyes on the sofa I decided to rest upstairs in our bedroom.  I took the normal safety precautions before retiring: locked all external doors and removed keys to a place of safekeeping.  With the Baby Alarm set I soon drifted off to sleep reassured that I had minimised risks of the ‘Happy Wanderer’ going missing.  What I hadn’t counted on were the events that followed an hour or so later.

As the Baby Alarm kicked into action I heard Maureen screaming downstairs.  When I joined her she was running around the house saying she was ‘locked in’.  She ran from room to room hurling abuse at me and pulled the tablecloth off the dining room table shattering several keep sakes as they crashed to the floor.  Nothing I said made any difference as I was the ‘Bad Guy’ keeping her in prison.  There is no need to repeat the abuse she hurled at me until she lay on the sofa exhausted from her attempts to verbally remonstrate with her captor.  Another incident early this morning cast me in the role of hero rather than villain.

I awoke around 1 am and checked Maureen’s whereabouts and found her locked in the downstairs utility room.  It took me a while to coach her on how to undo the bolt on the door and I managed to usher my very frightened wife upstairs to bed.  We have slept together relatively peacefully until 7 am apart from or two difficult moments where I have to reassure her until she returned to the land of nod.

There is no evidence of the ‘smashing time’ Maureen had yesterday unless you look in the dustbin.  It seems likely that the emotional scars have healed with the school trip at the forefront of Maureen’s mind.  If the weather holds we will make it to the car boot sale down the road this morning and resume our search for additional vinyl.  Maureen dreams of her school trip to Germany could not have come at a better time: a very lucky break indeed!

Footnote: Sincere thanks to family members and professional staff who gave me support in my hour of need yesterday.  You will be pleased to hear Maureen is back this morning: I hope ‘Mrs Dementia’ is taking a few days off!


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