Wednesday, December 04, 2013


Family matters.

A day for pondering.
It was 33 years ago that I lost my brother, Robin. And he was just 33 when he died.
So much he has missed and has been missed by the family.
Today will become another sad anniversary. I had news today of the death of my father's cousin in Australia. I never met Phyllis - but I know that she was special. She was born and raised in Australia. She was living life to the full right up to the end. Just 2 days ago, aged 84, she had made Christmas puddings for everybody in the family.
I am not sure but I think Phyllis must have been the last one of that generation descended from my Great Grandparents Frost - James and Ruth.

Today I chatted briefly with Jamie about his Father. Jamie is so far away and must feel somewhat helpless that he can give nothing more than words and advice to show he cares.
But interestingly, in the same week, he and I have come to some similar conclusions.
There are several forms of dementia,- most people only know of Alzheimer's Disease.
Almost certainly that is not the label we can give him.
Oh, why must it be 7 more weeks until we see the consultant psychiatrist?
Jamie and I have not seen the brain scans; nor we would understand it if we had.
All we can do is scan check lists for symptoms.
I don't why a label for Bill's condition would help me - but as today I have almost given him a label, I know that it does help.
The outcome will be much the same whatever name we give to this condition.
But for now we are looking at frontotemporal dementia.
As the name suggests, the front lobes of the brain are affected and it is these lobes that control the things that are going wrong for Bill.
It is also known as Pick Disease.

This website is not too long or involved if anybody feels like checking it out and offering their opinion.

Jamie suggested I get out some photograph albums to help him remember our trips to France to see Dee and Andrew. Jamie thought that if I encouraged Bill to help tidy and sort out the albums it would be beneficial. But honestly it is almost impossible to get him interested in anything and even harder to maintain the interest. He saw the pictures - therefore believes me that we were there with them. He wasn't even interested in the photos showing the small tractor stuck down a steep slope and the efforts to retrieve it.
Jamie, you just can't cajole your Father into co-operation like you can with a young child.

We went to see Bill's sister, Jane this afternoon. Bill behaves better in company - so obviously can just about control things.
He hardly said anything. He likes looking out of their window to see the building works in the distance.  For ex- Crawley folk I can report that a year ago The Embassy cinema was demolished and a huge new Morrisons super store is going in and also a Travel Lodge Hotel.
I am quite sure that Bill would hardly have listened to any conversation between Jane and me.
Rest assured, Bill - chat does me good.

We arrived home to a cooked dinner. I prepared braising steak and vegetables this morning and they had been cooking for 8 hours in the new slow cooker.
Bill was amazingly suspicious!!! Food that had been cooked in a new way - he wouldn't like it, he was sure!
Of course it was really good and he demanded finishing up the leftovers!

And now I offer you another web site - another family blog.
Clare has started to write.
She writes deeply, freely and well.
Please add the site to your favourites and find the time to have a read sometimes.

The title of the blog gives a clue to the current subject matter, though she assures us that other things will start to appear.

It will be chilly in the morning - warm clothes needed for our trip to the car boot sale at Ford.
But I am looking forward to it. Bill has assumed that he is going to be with me.