After we married, Miriam and I divided up the house tasks pretty much on traditional lines.
I worked for money, Miriam took primary care of the kids, made a little money on the side and did the cooking. We made decisions together, mostly.
That was before I retired and before AD.
The kids are grown now, none live closer than 3 hours away. I cook, but the kitchen belongs to Miriam and I have to make a lot of decisions that WE used to make.
I work now, but I don’t work all the time. Some days I don’t work too much at all. But that good old work ethic guilt kicks in -- regularly.
My studio is comfortable and is equipped well enough and I spend a good bit of time in it, but I am not a great artist and I don’t produce master pieces. Mostly I don’t mind. It is not necessary to be best at much of anything, I am told.
But as time goes on, more and more of what I used to think was very important, does not get done, and what makes it worse is that that is OK -- I think.
Maybe that is OK after all, but guilt still talkes to me sometimes.
i wanted to photograph Emily (and my other granddaughters) with both of her front teeth out, but they did not come out at the same time! When she was this age she spent a great deal of time at our house. I miss those wonderful days. Then she lived 25 miles away, now she is 400.
We worked on the same construction crew. I was foreman, Ron was the guy with the good eye and the strong back. We became good friends.
Years passed and we kept in touch. His mother in law had inherited a valuable painting. She was going to sell the painting and do some noble job for mankind. She borrowed money based on the value of the painting and proceeded with a video production company.
I was asked to be the director.
But mom was very unstable. In time Ron and wife divorced. She needed some money for something and Ron's father loaned her several thousand dollars which was used to enhance her figure. Dad was not amused.
Ron, after numerable attempts at reconciliation with his ex wife had met a lady and wanted to marry. He asked me if I would stand up in the wedding. A good friend said he would take pictures as a favor to me (friend was a professional photographer). Ron's mother refused to come to the wedding and spent the day locked in her room. She had hoped Ron and his X could get back together and she would accept no other option.
When we moved to Washington State from Texas, Ron and his new wife were living in the same town. He invited us over for a meal. Sounded good, so we went. He met us at the door, saying his new wife (it had been several years), would not come out of her room, that she did not want to meet us and that she had destroyed all of the pictures my friend had taken at their wedding. “She hated those pictures your friend took.”
I never saw him again.
He did tell me that his mother-in-law had destroyed the painting that was so valuable. It was a nude by someone that was supposed to be famous. I never saw the painting, nor did they share any information, but the fact that it was a nude was bad to her.
She blamed the painting for all the problems in her life.
This blog began as a spot to vent about my life with Miriam and her time with Alzheimer's disease.
She was diagnosed in '99 and her decline has been quite slow. In fact some of our best years of our long marriage have been these recent years.
Alzherimer's, at least her version is a disease of waiting. One shoe drops and it can be a very long time before the other one drops.
So life goes on.
At the beginning of this blog I told the story of our courtship and marriage, about out family and our personal journey with this disease. The part that scares the most is the anticipation as the disease slowly progresses.
So, I will touch on that subject from time to time, but the entries will tend toward comments on life. I'll leave politics and religion for others to worry about, not that I don't have strong opinions!
I have my hands full just looking after my wonderful Miriam.
We met when we were 6, began dating at 15 and have been together since. We will have our 56th anniversary this June.
We have four wonderful daughters. Smart, independent, awesome. They have given us 7 grandsons and 4 granddaughters. None of them are little any more. The oldest is 28 and married, the youngest is 14.
Until this last fall we lived in a hosue I designed and built in the '70's and it is pretty weird and wild, but very comfortable. Last summer the girls came to the conclusion that I really did need help dealing with Miriam. Now we live on a couple acres with daughter 1.
Life has been good. There is not much I would do different even if I could. We are rich beyond belief but chronically short of cash!
And, unless stated otherwise all the photographs are mine.