September 27, 2020 © by Judith Allen Shone
Contrbutor, Gail Gregory, Guest Author
I have been following Gail Gregory’s blog on my Twitter feed for a few months, “Too Young for Dementia?” – Journey with Diagnosis of Early-Onset Alzheimer’s, because I wanted to learn more about this particular dementia disease, unfamiliar to me.
Over time I have become acquainted with this amazing woman who, following her diagnosis at age 54, decided to “live my life the best I can and enjoy every minute” instead of “letting Alzheimer’s take over.”
She won my admiration because of her positive attitude, her lovely and intriguing photos and all the things she loves to do!
She can be an example to us all, that no matter what we face, we can do it with the intention to make the best of it. I, for one, hope to instill her philosophy into my every waking minute!
Gail leads a very active life. She loves her early morning walks to one of her ‘happy places’ – the beach along the sea, with its blue skies, silence and open space. Many times she is joined by her adoring husband and her dear dogs.
Crafting has been a long-time passion and Gail gets pleasure from her multitude of beautiful craft projects she creates in her craft room.
Fortunate to be able to live at her own pace, Gail does what she loves with those she loves. She enjoys her place by the beach, gets excited to have the company of her extended family, paints, writes poetry, is an avid photographer, works in her garden, prepares meals for her guests, goes shopping, attends a support group and ‘zooms’ like so many do now, and then, shares it all with us.
From her blog, we can learn and understand about the beautiful life one can lead when diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s. I hope you will take time to read her stories, her diary. Each one is just that, a report of her day.
Let’s join Gail for a cup of tea, absorb some of her positive energy as we read her contribution taken from a recent day…including a topic that seems “conveniently forgotten”… with her permission:
Diary… Not a Bad Day.
by Gail Gregory
Thursday 24th September 2020
Last night I had to go to bed early, think it could have been the lack of sleep from previous nights catching up with me. At around 8.30 it was like someone had taken my batteries out…one minute I’m fine the next…bang…can’t keep my eyes open. My eyes became heavier and heavier so instead of trying to fight it I just gave in and went to bed. Did I sleep? I most certainly did, but not without the 2 or 3 wakes during the night…well I think it was 2 or 3 who knows!
I thought I would talk about incontinence today as it is a subject which is never discussed…brushed over and very conveniently forgotten about.
Incontinence happens and most of us in our life time will be subjected to the odd accident. But it’s when those odd accidents become more frequent that we worry. We are embarrassed and the thought of having to wear incontinence pads / pants makes us shudder.
I can remember my first accident well…I was distraught at the fact I had wet myself, something I had not planned for…definitely was not expecting to happen in my 50’s…my husband was great, he tried too calm me down and said it was ok, but it was the sheer embarrassment. All sorts of things run through your mind
Will my husband still love me
I will have to wear incontinence aids
I feel dirty, unclean
My first thought was…no one should have to see me like this especially my husband.
I had had little accident before especially the ones where you have been out and as soon as you turn the corner to your house it’s like you can feel the urge…feel the pressure building…I need to pee…I need to pee! As you put the key in the door trying so hard not to pee…jigging up and down as the bloody key won’t turn in the lock and the flood gates decide to open! Some times you make it other times well that’s where an incontinence pad is your saviour!
I am now 56 and I am not embarrassed to say…I use incontinence pads…at the end of the day what is more embarrassing wetting yourself or wearing an incontinence pad.
Incontinence happens to lots of people of all ages, it’s just never really talked about, so please don’t be embarrassed…please don’t be ashamed! Go and buy some Tena ( other makes are available)
Pretty ordinary day here today…food shop day so out early to miss the crowds of people, it’s becoming my norm to do shopping once a week as early as I can. Less contact with people surely means less chance of contracting the virus.
We downloaded the new track and trace app
I have a delivery…I’m like a child…New dies for my New Big Shot Machine! How exciting well it is to me as I open the box and look inside…lots of lovely goodies.
Another package comes just after, hubby comes through and puts it on the kitchen work surface. with a look on his face as he puts it down…the look of ” Not something else”! ha! ha!
We both laugh as I do an impersonation of him putting the package down… As it happens the package wasn’t for me which made us laugh even more!
I’m straight in the garage to try out some of my new dies but not making cards with the new dies today, as I have a couple of cards to finish off from the other day and a teddy bear which I cut out yesterday which I need to start. So that’s my project for the day.
Late afternoon I have had enough in my craft room so me and hubby sit down to watch ” Appropriate Adult ” As I missed last night episode because I went to bed early.
All in all not a bad day
Diary – Not a Bad Day © 2020 Gail Gregory
Gail Gregory continues to write her blog and remains active in all the activities she loves, as she lives with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease.
For more information, follow these links:
1- If you wish to BE INSPIRED about early-onset Alzheimer’s from Gail Gregory’s personal, daily perspective, subscribe to her blog or
follow Gail on
Thank you for joining us today. Remember, you are my sunshine! 🌞
“Incontinence…”Conveniently Forgotten”” © 2020 Judith Allen Shone
Each day do something to make others smile and your heart sing!
…follow the life of a spouse caregiver, for one with memory loss, in the series Accepting the Gift of Caregiving, –
Is There Any Ice Cream? and
Did You Hide the Cookies?
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