tourist The thoughts escape me.
Uncertainty reigns Supreme.
My memory fails,
Is replaced by the dream.
Never a certainty.
Always a guess.
Did I even Live?
No remorse or regrets.
When I rarely remember
The Days once they've passed.
There's really no use
In Kicking My Ass!
dosquatch I've always said, I don't want to lose my mind. I don't want to be swept off, away from reality, into some discombobulated world of my imagination's most random creation.

My grandmother suffers from this. She's in the early "moderate" stage. Most days she's still Grandma. Some days, though, the people her imagination conjures for her are more real than those of us actually here with her.

And I notice... maybe "suffers" isn't the right word. The only time she seems to be suffering is when she's agitated, which then is only when we're patiently trying to explain that "all of these people" aren't really here. Left alone, she's having great conversations, a good laugh here and there. Mind you, with the bookcase, the clothes hanging in the closet, the shadow in the corner, a folded blanket on the couch, but to her they are Grandpa, and their life-long friend James, her younger sister, and the little girl she used to babysit before my Mom was born.

But we tell her those people aren't really there, and she gets mad. Mad at us for ignoring people we should be happy to see. Mad at them for not speaking up to us so we know they're there. Mad at herself for "acting a fool again" (her words).

So should we leave her alone on those days? Let her slip away without a fight, until we're all shadows in the corners?

Sometimes I wonder if, on some level, this isn't a gift. Who doesn't wish to spend another day, another hour, with a lost loved one? To have one more chance to say I Love You? To laugh with an old friend?

Who am I to deny that to a person? Maybe the ghosts are real and I'm the fool who can't see them because I'm closed-minded about what's "real" or not.

Descartes said that, ultimately, the only provable statement is "I think, therefore I am". All else in creation could be a trick of our senses, an Evil Genie pumping false signals into our inputs. "Reality", then, is but our perception of it. Is that enough to make the ghosts real? Are they real and the Genie is hiding them from me? Is Alzheimer's just the ability to see through the Genie's spell? I don't know.

And again, maybe I'm just jealous. Maybe I'd like to see Grandpa again, too.
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