Friday, April 29, 2022

Another Blog


Holding Shelley's hand

I've started a new blog.


I focus on early onset dementia from a mother's perspective.

Most of the time, children take care of parents who've grown older. Parents who face the challenges of Alzheimer's or Dementia.

Shelley and I are the odd ones out.

When I check into the community where she lives, if the receptionist doesn't know me, she'll ask, "Are you her daughter or her sister?"

The mouth drops open when I say, "I'm her mom."

I go often, and most of the people know me, but there are usually new aides or office personnel to meet. Memory care facilities seem to have a large turnover. Shelley has been in the current facility since 2020, and we are on the third management team.

I'm pleased two of the aides reman. If not for these two people, I might move her.

One of the aides saved her life when she was attacked. You can read about it under the "Dealing with Dementia" tab on this blog.  Shelley lights up when this person is nearby. Somewhere, deep in the recesses of her brain, she remembers and appreciates the aide saving her life.

Today was a good day for her. She was up walking the hallways when her dad and I went to see her. She could almost remember things I spoke about.  

I don't say, "Do you remember...." I talk about past events or people. When I told her Don (her deceased husband) was in heaven with Jesus having a good time. He was singing, playing the guitar, and laughing..  She responded, "I want to go be with him."  I told her she would go there one day, but today, we were going to sing in her room. We then sang her favorite song. "You Are My Sunshine." And yes, she sang the words on key!

Shelley and Dad.

A good day. 

She told us over and over,

"I love you."

A very good day.

I invite you to follow my new blog.


Sunday, April 17, 2022

Proper Burial Attire


Her mother loved it! The color orange, that is.  My Atlanta friend’s mom had designated a certain dress as her burial attire, but she decided, instead, that it would look pretty on her sister. So, when her sister died, the attire went to her. My friend’s mom than determined she wanted to be buried in an orange blouse with light-colored slacks. During one of their shopping trips, while she was in good health, she found the prefect orange blouse. It became her designated burial attire.  She kept in in her closet and wouldn’t wear it because she was saving it. My friend and her mom often joked about saving the blouse.  After her mom got sick and bedridden, my friend was horrified to walk into her room one day to find her dressed in the burial shirt! After that, my friend kept it, along with the off-white burial slacks in her care so they would stay safe—to be ready when the time came.

One day she visited her mom, and the mom said, “Go get my funeral shirt. I need to get dressed. I have a funeral to go to, and I need to be ready at 2:00! When my friend asked, Whose funeral?” Her answer came quickly. “Mine.”

Before she went to Glory, she had a week of clarity. Her mom reiterated again the shirt was for her burial.  She wanted to make sure she was buried in that shirt.  She was!

A Houston friend has a sister in Austin. The Austin sister asked her Houston sister, “Are you coming?”  My friend asked, “Where?”  Her sister replied, “To my funeral, of course. It’s today at 2:00. I have on my pink dress.”  The Austin sister wasn’t sick, but one must wonder if dementia was becoming part of her life.

The two o’clock hour must be a popular time for funerals. Both of these ladies wanted their service at 2:00.

When my daughter’s mother-in-law died, my daughter cleaned out her mother-in-law’s apartment. The many bags for Goodwill were stacking up, and I suggested to my daughter that she save a garment for the burial. My daughter replied, “Oh, that’s okay. It will be a closed casket.”  I replied, “She still needs clothes!”

Can you imagine being buried like Eve before she and Adam invented fig leaves?

My mom wanted to be buried in a negligee. She refused suggestions of a dress. She loved beautiful, sexy nightwear. When she passed unexpectedly, her skimpy nightdresses were not suitable. My sister and I went to Macy’s to find a negligee. Nothing was appropriate. At the funeral home, the director told us, “We have them. A lot of ladies want beautiful negligees so they can be comfortable in their final resting place.”  We bought a purple negligĂ©e from the funeral home and buried her in it. Purple was her favorite color.

When a friend of mine left this earth at age 94, her grandson found a box under her bed. The note read, “For my funeral.” It was a beautiful, pink chiffon dress she’d worn once—on her 50th wedding anniversary.

Have you decided what you will wear in your final resting place? Or what kind of apparatus will be in the plot?

I read about a man in Pennsylvania who wanted his ashes buried in his white Corvette. He bought twelve burial plots to house him and his car. After a lot of negotiation, the man and car with 27,000 miles on the odometer were buried in a private ceremony.

In I Thessalonians, chapter 4, we are told the dead in Christ rise first, and then the rest of us will go up after them. Our bodies will be reunited with our spirits.

Now I don’t believe we will go through eternity wearing orange shirts or purple negligees, but whatever we have on in the casket may be seen as we go up to Glory. At some point in eternity, Christians will be clothed in eternal righteousness. Revelation 7:9, ESV says, “After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands.”

Easter is the most important day in Christendom. Jesus was buried in someone else’s clothes. Strips of cloth, actually. He didn’t choose the attire, but he chose death and the shedding of His blood as a means to bring salvation to sinners.

He stayed dead three days, and then God raised Him from the dead.

It doesn’t matter what we wear to the casket, but it matters what we believe in the here and now. We are all sinners, but to be clothed appropriately in eternity, we must confess and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9 NIV.

Have a blessed Easter!

Friday, April 15, 2022

Family Secrets on Sale Now!


My book, Family Secrets, in the eBook format, will be on sale on Amazon for .99 on April 15-20.  If you haven’t read this historical book, now is a good time to download a copy for your eReader.  Here’s a blurb:

Dallas, Texas, 1975. A dark time in history but also a time of change. Although civil rights were revolutionizing, racial prejudice still existed.

Rebecca Davis, a nurse, hasn’t seen family in fifteen years. They hid secrets from her, and she won’t forgive them. Ever.

Two single men and an adorable child enter her life. She falls in love with all three. If she could marry, which man would she choose? The one with the delightful daughter? No matter, those secrets forbid love for her.

Everyone has secrets, right? We keep them because they are sleazy and might hurt someone if they knew. When is a secret worth sharing? When should they come to light and free us?


Monday, April 4, 2022

A Chapter from My Work-in-Progress


I thought you might like to read an excerpt from a book I'm working on.  It doesn't have a title yet.  If you suggest a title, and I use it, I'll give you credit.

Let me know what you think!

Eye-popping beauty. He couldn’t remember a female more stunning.

David Worth stared spellbound at the woman. He couldn’t help it. She might be a mirage and disappear if he turned his head. Like da Vinci’s masterpiece on canvas, The Mona Lisa, beauty like hers should be appreciated and admired. Shameless gaping was ill-mannered, sure, he knew that, but he couldn’t stop what some might call his awestruck gaze. And of course, it was rude, but he didn’t care. He had to look at her. Despite the sad expression she wore, the spectacular woman’s face and body was beyond words. His words at the moment, and he got paid to talk. He walked toward her from the opposite, far side of the hospital corridor. Even though courtesy dictated he avert his gawk, he refused to take his eyes off this magnificent creature.

As a trained physician, he detected she was troubled. What did the lady have on her mind? Her contemplation focused on some unseen thing beyond him. Perhaps she gazed at art on a wall behind him, but he guessed she was wrapped up with images playing in her head. From the looks of her forlorn expression, the beautiful creature had suffered an unhappy morning. Why was she here in the hospital anyway? Visiting the sick? A loved one? Known for his observation skills, he noted her short jacket over a simple form-fitting black dress. Was she in mourning? He’d counseled enough people to recognize deep grief and pain. Perhaps someone close to her had died. Determined to bring hope to her hearting heart, he halted three feet in front of her. With her thoughts elsewhere, she almost ran smack-dab into him. She stopped in time and raised her head. Blinking several times as if to clear her vision, she seemed at long last to notice him.

Even with heels, she was five inches shorter than him. He smiled down at her. “Good morning!” His tone sounded tender and intimate, even to his own ears.

The woman widened her eyes and blinked again. “Good morning.” Her voice indicated confusion as she appeared to search her memory for his name.

Furrowing her brow as if she couldn’t think of anything else to say to this stranger blocking her path, she side-stepped and moved past him.

David watched her leave. As she reached the exit, she turned to look back at him.

He smiled and nodded to her.

She shrugged as if to say, “You spoke as if you know me, but I can’t place you. Sorry.”

David gave a little finger wave and broadened his smile.

Returning the traditional goodbye hand gesture, she turned and left the hallway with a hurried gait.

Feeling as though the sun had gone from the room, David made his way to the conference chamber. He greeted several doctors he knew and introduced himself to others before he made his way to the dais with the woman on his mind.

Gay N. Lewis on Amazon

PBG Insider: Gay N. Lewis Introduces her "Sarah" series

Sarah at Christmas