Note From Our Dear Friend & Colleague
Dr. Richard Taylor
Here is a note I received from Richard after he had a chance to listen to the radio show we did honoring him and his dedication to making a difference around the world when it comes to shifting our dementia care culture. For those of you who have not listened to the program here is the link.
It was pretty amazing all the people who came together in such a short period of time to put this program together. I personally want to thank everyone again for all the juggling of schedules and time zones throughout the world. It was so fun doing this show!
A note from Richard which he gave his permission for me to share with all of you.
Hello, my dear friends, thank you so much for your many kind words about yours truly. I was deeply touched by each of your words. It was a little like waking up at your own memorial service, and not having the strength to lift up the lid of urn to peak out. I didn’t get around to hearing it until several days after it ocured. It is folks like each of you that maintain my glimmer of hope for the better futures of those living with the symptoms of dementia.
I am awake a modest number of hours each day, and they are mostly consumed with dealing with side effects I just told Al Power that I had moved from not so good, to not so bad, and now to borderline bad. I keep telling myself “one day at a time” but since days are beginning to blend together as I sleep more and more, and since each day is an empty and side effect ridden day, this strategy doesn’t seem to be as effect as I had hoped. I am half way through these two Therapies” (self poisoning – Chemo, and self exposure to atomic fall-out – radiation).
I’m told the radiation doesn’t become “unpleasant” until the last two weeks!
I am empty of purpose, passion, and inward peace. Medication for my side effects now drives and defines my life. I am tired of eating what I know is good food which is quite good for me when I can’t taste it, and no matter how good it is – it still rumbles through my digestive system.
And all this is the prelude to the surgeon’s kiss/slashes – a forever dramatic alteration of my digestive system. I have lost about 12 pounds despite having purchased and consumed every bottle of Ensure in Cosco’s inventory. I eat, and eat, and eat, and still lose weight most every day. My Brother stayed with us the first two weeks of treatment and together (actually it is was mostly him) we got the second book together. I’ve decided to publish it for 3 months on Kindle+. Family has rallied around me and are a constant source of support, as is my new assistant, Thomas. I don’t lack for carers, I lack much interaction with them because I am either sick or asleep, or both.
I get a month between therapy and surgery to recover enough so I can again be overwhelmed by the surgery and its side effects! Luck me! I still fear the impact of the 9 hour surgery on my dementia, but we’ll see what we’ll see. Stay tuned, and thank you again for taking the time to share your supportive and heartfelt thoughts with me. A special thanks to Lori for making this all happen.
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