It’s been seven years since my grandfather was diagnosed with dementia.
For those unfamiliar, dementia is not a specific disease, but a term to describe a wide range of symptoms. These include loss of memory, communication, language, reasoning, judgement and visual perception.
Over the past seven years, I have seen my grandpa suffer from all of the above. Vivid and terrifying hallucinations. Physical aggression due to confusion. Concussions, bruises and stitches from falls. Forgetting his family and friends. Forgetting the english language altogether. It’s difficult to see a man who was so strong and independent, become a shell of himself within just a few short years.
The truth is, even though his body is still here, I said goodbye to the man I love a long time ago.