Dementia project – Lyne

With described video



Lyne: In my studies, in my work, it's always been important to find, what I called, strategies—but now we can call them tactics—to be comfortable in my own skin.

And I'll say it right now, for Alzheimer's, for me, what I always say, my mantra when things go wrong too, is: do everything possible to feel good as long as possible, with the most autonomy possible.

(Lyne Martin looks at shelves of books in a library.)

Lyne: I have all kinds of tools that I use… I wouldn't say to calm down, but to be a little bit more zen.

(She takes a book titled "Healing Alzheimer's" off a shelf.)

Lyne: When I got the news, well, there was shock and all that, but I expected it a little, given that I had noticed memory lapses.

And so I quickly asked myself, "What do I do with that?"

Knowing fairly early is extremely important. It means having more time to talk with your spouse, friends, family and all that. And so they know how to behave.

In terms of short-term memory, when normally doing things, you shouldn't forget two seconds after doing it… "What was it that I wanted to do again?"

(She sits down and reads a book.)

That, that was the most appalling to me.

I'll give examples. Setting the table when we have guests over—it's like nothing. But now I'll just stand in front of the table. And my grandchildren will just look at me.

And then one time, one of the little girls said: "Grandma, we're going to take some paper napkins and write the names." So she's helped me out since that day.

(She reads a book on "Alzheimer's and Dementia.")

Lyne: You've got to stay active, eh, when you have Alzheimer's disease. It's necessary to adapt all the time.

Pierre: The loss of abilities that she has, she doesn't understand them right away. Sometimes she thinks it's a one-off thing and so she doesn't ask for help.

Then she'll repeat the thing two, three, four, five times. It takes time before she can admit that there really is a problem. And that she has to ask me for help.

Lyne: "Lunix" doesn't exist, does it?

Pierre: What?

Lyne: "Lunix"?

Pierre: No.

Lyne: Xu, xi... "Xi"?

Pierre: For example, when she continually has difficulty finding things. When she's looking for her phone, for example. I'll see it, the phone, in the corner of my eye. "Did you look there? Where did you leave it last? Go look in such-and-such place. I think it should be there."

It's a bit of a game too, you know. It lightens the situation a bit.

Lyne: That's what's important.

Pierre: There are beautiful years yet, so we must take advantage of them. You can't ruin life thinking about what's going to happen later. You really have to enjoy the present moment.

Lyne: Well, it's a collaborative game we have!

(She plays Scrabble with her spouse, Pierre Tourangeau.)

Lyne: I can still go on many more trips. Of course, with someone keeping an eye out, just in case.

But we can do a lot more things.

(Text appears on the screen: Dementia might look different than you expect.

The Government of Canada logo appears.)

Narration: A message from the Government of Canada.

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