isn’t that what we all want?
i don’t mean in the way that when you pass away from life, people will remember you (though that would be nice as well), but more like in everyday life.
you pass by someone who used to sit next to you in elementary school, and he remembers you.
it’s your birthday, and your old friend whom you haven’t met for years remembers it and sends you a short but sweet birthday wish.
your new boss who has only been at work with you for a few days calls you by your name, correctly.
i don’t know about you, but i at least like being remembered in simple things like these. it makes me feel like i’ve made quite an impression in other people’s lives for them to remember my name, my face, etc. (well, remembering my birthday is a great bonus.)
about a month ago, there was a family party from my husband’s side. my husband’s grandmum, which i have known now for about 9 years, came as well, with my husband’s granddad. around 2 months before, we had met for lunch as well. so it wasn’t as if we hadn’t met for years.
but, my husband’s grandmum did not remember me. actually, she did not remember pretty much anyone, not even my husband, or my husband’s mum. she could only introduce herself as the wife of my husband’s granddad.
yes, she suffers from dementia. and i have been told, before that party, that her condition had started to become worse. but i really wasn’t ready to be forgotten.
of course, when i think of it, it’s only natural that she did not remember people whom she doesn’t meet every day (or week). and technically i have only been in 1/10 of her entire life. so, it makes sense. knowing that i wasn’t the only one she did not remember was also… er… comforting? :p
a few weeks after the party, she got admitted to the hospital. the dementia is now so bad that she can not be left alone/unattended anymore (for fear that she might wander about, and get lost on her own). when they tested her memory, she could only get 1 correct answer out of 10. we take turns visiting her there, just to talk to her and relive the memories.
the first time my husband & i visited her, we were a bit nervous. what if she couldn’t remember us at all? would she panic? did she even want to see us?
but when we walked through the door of her room, she looked at my husband and said warmly, “hello! i’ve been waiting for you!” and went on to say his name. and she looked at me, and called me by my name, correctly! 🙂
we were both so happy and relieved. we spent a bit more than an hour there just to talk to her, about the past. sometimes she got confused, but she was always so positive, and when we reminded her of how things actually were, she laughed about her own forgetfulness.
then, just before we left, she asked us to help her get up from bed. my husband asked, “what do you want, grandmum?”, worried that she might get confused again and thought she needed to come home with us. but her answer was, “i want to give you two goodbye kisses!”
🙂 it was a happy day, to be remembered by someone who has dementia.
she is currently still in hospital & we are still taking turns to see her. i think it’s doing her good to be with her family members, and talking about the past (and my husband also tests her about the present time sometimes). she still remembered us whenever we visited her.
and i will always remember that she remembered me. 🙂