Monday, April 27, 2015

Cruising down the Alzheimer Highway without a roadmap

Found myself staring out the window this afternoon absently reaching for the name of the cat I've had for at least 18 years.

Reaching... reaching...

Just couldn't get hold of it.


Ya, it's Chloe of course! How could I forget? Chloe got fixed at the vet clinic where Karla Homolka worked back in the day. I'm pretty sure Karla was in jail by the time Chloe was at that clinic, but still, that leaves Chloe one degree of separation from Karla... and me two.

There's a history of Alzheimer's in my mother's family. Her mom, my grandmother, Leokadia Packull, spent the last twenty years of her life institutionalized. I used to go and see her from time to time. We were close when I was a youngster. We were still doing things the old-world way where the elders live with their children and their children's children.

Somewhere along the way we adopted the new-world custom of dropping the elders off in a home.

That seems a cruel abuse of language if you ask me.

"We're taking you out of your home and putting you in a home."

Leokadia, or Lotte as she styled herself, had three children.

My mother, who still has all her marbles rolling in the same direction.

And two uncles, both on the Alzheimer Highway. The younger one went to a home just before Christmas.

He's fifteen years older than me.

Maybe he's my roadmap.

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