Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Can You Help Me?

This is my Granny Ruth who practically raised me. I was her only granddaughter for 17 years. She was the love of my life. The absolute love of my life (of course, that excludes my kids and hubby).

She died of Alzheimer's Disease on Tuesday, October 3, 2006. She was 83. This disease ravaged her mind and her body and we watched her die slowly, first her mind, then her body. For years it went on. Little pieces of her disappeared along with all of her memories of those that she loved most.

At the end, she lived in a world that never included her children, or me, or any of her other grandchildren. She reverted back to her childhood and mostly talked about her sisters and what they did yesterday or the day before. One day they've planted a garden, another day they're washing clothes on the front porch with their grandmother.

She always wondered why her parents never come to pick her up. They, of course, had been gone for years, but she still packed her clothes and waited for them. Every night. Every day. She packed and she waited. She would say, "Please, Daddy, please."

She sometimes seemed to know there was a "Rachel" and every time I asked her if she knew who I am, she would say, "Well no, not really." I'd say, "I'm Rachel, your granddaughter," and EVERY SINGLE TIME she would say, "Oh, I THOUGHT those were your eyes!" Maybe there was a memory of me there somewhere.

She eventually stopped making complete sentences, her sentences were often laced with made-up words. We watched her struggle to find the right word for whatever story she was telling, and it was heartbreaking.

I miss her so much. I miss how she cooked me oatmeal, bacon, and toast when I'd come down each morning before I went to work to spend time with her. I miss taking her to get groceries and how she studied every sales paper before she would decide which store we would go to.

I miss her delicious Christmas fudge and how she'd always be surprised at the gifts we had made her or gave her for holidays.

I miss her laughter and how her purse always smelled like Doublemint gum. I miss every single thing about her.

I ache for one more of her tight hugs every single day of my life.

She is why I walk. She is why I try to raise money to help find a cure for this horrible disease. SHE is why I keep asking for donations. I just wanted to share my story with you. I wanted you to see why helping find a cure is so important to me.

If you'd like to donate any amount at all, you can visit my page by going here (it's safe, and you can make an anonymous donation if you so choose):

Thanks for taking the time to read this.

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