I watched her grab a nail file and rub it on her face, her efforts to remove a mark on her face that was bothering her because she was constantly picking at it. (She wasn’t in harms way, I had a very close eye on her) She also brushed her face in attempts to groom herself in some manner which I did not understand. She searched and searched and opened drawers and just looked at everything and searched for something. I finally asked her what she needed. It was a toothbrush, a toothbrush that was directly in front of her. I gave it to her and she went to work again, brushing her teeth. She started again with the searching. She found a tube of lipstick but decided it wasn’t for her. She found lip gloss and applied it to her lips. Not once did she ask for help. Her mind no longer understands what a quarter sleeve is which she proves by anxiously pulling at her sleeves in an attempt to elongate them. Her confusion is constant, when I watch her I do not understand and I realize neither does she. Her world is deteriorating every day.
All I can do is watch. I try not to hover. She does not deserve to be limited by my worries. She deserves a chance to try her hand at tasks. I help her after she has a chance to try. I cry with her, I cry for her. I feel her pain but I can not help. I can only stand to the side and watch her take this journey. A journey that does not end with life but with death. Her mind will leave and so will she.
Dementia destroys something I can not heal. I am only a caregiver.