The First Rule of a Good Lifeguard

The First Rule of a Good Lifeguard



Don’t drown with a drowning victim. Save yourself first.

Don’t spread yourself too thin. Learn to say no politely and quickly.




Caregiver Pointers

ü Do not lose your patience with me.

ü Sometimes I am sad and lost — I need you to be with me.

ü I can’t always help the way I’m acting.

ü Please don’t holler or make me feel guilty because I don’t remember

        or understand something.

ü I can’t always explain how I feel. It’s beyond your understanding too.

ü I’m not the person you used to know. I pray to God that you won’t

        expect me to.

ü I try to do my best so please stand beside me.

ü When I’m confused or frustrated just let me calm down and let me

         know you’re with me.

ü Hold me and give me a kiss when I least expect it.

ü Please just love me no matter how sick or bad I ever become.


Onward with my story. So during October, November and December 2007 we decided we needed to sell our home. We would need to move from California back to Pennsylvania, our roots. I had no option but to quit working and to go on permanent medical disability. I no longer was clever enough to cover my cognitive changes in order to do any job plus the fact that I could not drive. My wife’s father and her step-mother flew to CA to help us move. I have failed to mention that my step-son had moved in with us by this time. On December 27th, the movers loaded up the truck and the 5 of us along with 2 Shitsu dogs left our fond memories behind. We loaded up 2 cars and drove across the country and arrived in PA on New Years Day, January 1, 2008. I remember very little of that odyssey other than I sat in the backseat of the car silently crying for several hours. What a loss. A career. Friends. A lovely home. Beautiful country and scenery. Goodbye California and San Francisco. I will never forget you. You’ve enriched my life and have fertilized my mind forever. Thank you California and to those with whom I came into contact.

Tomorrow……..the odyssey.


Dr. David


3 Responses

  1. WOW! Thank you for your story and tips. If you stopped blogging right now you have already helped so many. My father-in-law was just diagnosed with LBD and was started on the Exelon patch. He seems better than I have seen him in years. It is so easy to forget that this disease is lurking, still present. The caregiver tips today are SO important! THANK YOU for your courage in this fight and for drawing your line in the sand against LBD. I look forward to reading more of your story. My prayers are with you and your family.

  2. David, I understand how you felt when you packed up and moved. I lived in AR all my life and after being diagnosed with Frontotemporal Dementia in Feb 2007, was told to move to Kansas as soon as possible to be near my daughter, who would be my caregiver. I was told to make a living will and a durable power of attorney, too. I sold the home I had just purchased the year before, sorted & threw out things I didn’t think my children would care about and packed the rest in a Uhaul truck & with my car in tow, my son drove me to KS. I’m divorced (for 18 yrs) and spent many days crying about the diagnosis & leaving AR and all my friends.
    My diagnosis was changed last month to Mild Cognitive Impairment, but I still have moderate frontal/temporal lobe atrophy. So, I believe FTD is still ‘lurking’ out there. Any thoughts about that?

  3. My husband was diagnosed with Vascular Dementia last October. In August I discovered Binswangers Disease and took the info to his PCP and Psychiatrist who confirmed that he has Binswangers. I had to place him in a facility in June due to his agressiveness. I have great guilt with this as I feel that I have abandoned him. Thank you for your blog. It is already helping me greatly.

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