A Gift of Paris

People often caution me to take care of myself,  reminding me that the spouse  is under the most stress and is most likely to become ill. Statistics say the spouse often   gets Alzheimer’s too.  I understand …. the loss of sleep,  the stress, … the sadness ….

But I’m the lucky one, the one who has help; I have Jon who lives with us, along with his wife and 2 young children, so it’s possible for me to get out of the house. It’s even possible for me to go away on a vacation; in fact, Jon insists.

Last week I was in Paris,  a gift  so precious that I smile every time I think of my escape from reality,  a week to satisfy my thirst for travel.   Adriana (Jon’s wife) and I had a wonderful time crisscrossing the city on foot, by Metro, taxi and train, doing all of the wonderful big and little things that are Paris: museums, monuments, parks, cathedrals, chateaus, cafes, shopping, crepes and hot chocolate — even a fashion show at Galleries Lafayette.

When we returned,  I told Jon that not only did the trip make me happy and relaxed, but I also came home feeling physically fit because of all of the walking we did.  My knee, which usually bothers me,  didn’t hurt, not even once.  I slept well, ate well,  and to be honest,  I didn’t think much about home.  I knew Jon was here taking great care of Bo so I could feel normal for a week.

Adriana  started me monitoring the number of steps I take each day using an app on my phone,  and I’ve taken the challenge.  Now I’m taking Emma for extra long walks every day, with 10,000 steps my target. Some days I do better than others,  but I’m rather close to my goal… therapeutic for a caregiver.

As I write all of this,  I think of the many, many caregivers who have no respite, no way to feel relaxed or normal.  They live in their own prisons and this is the tragedy of Alzheimer’s and dementia — both people are trapped in the disease.

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10 Responses to A Gift of Paris

  1. Maureen says:

    Love it so happy for you!!!

  2. Annamarie says:

    Wow! I’m so happy to hear you and Adriana had an escape in Paris! That’s awesome!! Thanks for posting the happy pics. We all love you–and God Bless Jon & his family for being there for you and Boris.

  3. So true. The trapped part! Congrats on getting away. A girls vacation.

  4. Pat says:

    What better “medicine” that a week in Paris! Adirana couldn’t have had a better guide for seeing Paris! Brings back sweet memories.

  5. Mary Smith says:

    How fantastic, Nancy. You really deserve the trip to Paris and the complete break from caring for a little while.
    I also aim for 10,000 steps a day, though I don’t always make the goal unless I specifically go for a walk. Days at my desk don’t get me anywhere near the target so I am going to have to be strict about goign for a walk. I need a dog.

  6. Very glad you had a chance to enjoy Paris and some well earned rest!!! You are an excellent role model for the rest of us. I’m taking notes.

  7. Arleen Stolzenberger says:

    First – how many pounds did you two put on! Reading this was so awesome. A girl’s vacation. It’s amazing how well the body reacts to lack of stress. Looking forward to hearing how you 10,000 steps goal go. As always you, Bo, Jon and family is in our thoughts and prayers.

  8. Fabulous! So well deserved! As you so rightly say there are many others who don’t have the same opportunity, like you I wish they had.

  9. Scarlett79 says:

    What a nice thing for you to do 🙂 So happy you had a chance to recharge ❤

  10. Paula Kaye says:

    Wow! A trip to Paris. I cannot imagine having had that opportunity! I am so happy for you. And glad that you can come back feeling so much better. You are a very fortunate lady in many ways

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