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My Grandfather died eight years ago after suffering from Alzheimer's for 5 years, the last year was so debilitating that he could no longer care for himself. It was difficult to watch such a vibrant life slowly fade to a shadow of his former self. All of this was difficult on our family, especially on my grandmother. We slowly recognized his senility with forgetfulness, losing things, repeating himself and getting lost while driving. We hoped this was just vascular dementia which can be less sever and even treatable (with blood thinners/ blood pressure meds) compared to Alzheimer's. Adding to his debilitating condition was that he was going blind. After being sedated for eye surgery, his condition seemed to diminish rapidly. His dementia then included hallucinations and he was unable to recognize his family members.
As the end of his life drew near, he was unresponsive and his body curled to the fetal position. In my father's last visit with him, my grandfather who had not spoke in sometime, was blind, and had been unresponsive to anyone, turned his head when my father spoke to him and looked him in the eye. He said nothing, but my father believed that was his way of saying good bye. . .
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