This is an amazing description of the confusion that can be caused from dementia. Thank you Norrms McNamara again for sharing such powerful insights.
The Day The Earth Moved
As Elaine and I walked into the shop I saw something move in the corner of my eye, could it be a little mouse coming in from the cold? Well, they did sell food and it’s not impossible I thought, but just then, just as I took my third step into the shop, it happened!
The floor started to move beneath my feet, very slowly at first and from side to side. As I stood rigid, not quite believing what I was seeing I could also feel my body swaying to the motion in front of my eyes. Just then, two, what looked like snakes appeared from out of the carpet one either side of me, and seem to grow in stature!!They rose from the carpet swaying as they grew. They weren’t menacing as such but something somewhere deep inside told me there was something very wrong.
As I reached for my “Angel” Elaine, it was as if she knew there was something wrong and turned around just when I thought I was going to fall over from the motion. My face was drained just like when someone is just about to faint and I asked, very sheepishly if I could go back outside and try and make some sense of this. As we stood outside my breathing came back to normal as it was much laboured in the shop, and I stood there very confused and very frightened.
Once I got my bearings back I looked back inside the shop from the outside and there it was! The cause of my latest episode, the carpet was grey and yellow and with two great big red stripes running down either side of the Aisles. From the outside looking in, it looks perfectly normal. But for someone with dementia, it’s one of the worst things I have ever experienced!! I went through something similar a few weeks back when I thought the carpet in a different shop was moving beneath my feet, but it was only a fleeting thing, nothing like this. Unfortunately it didn’t stop there; as we arrived home I went into the toilet and shouted as I was convinced the water was right at the top of the toilet bowl!! It wasn’t, but my perception of seeing the water in the bottom made it look like it was up to the brim and ready to spill over” Once again, the calming effect of Elaine reassured me all was ok.
This just shows that this God awful disease is not just about forgetfulness and memory, or just about losing your life skills, but about seeing things that are not actually happening!! Call them Hallucinations, call them tricks of the mind, call them what you like!! But please don’t deny these things happen because they are so very real, to me and thousands of others. It’s not the shopkeeper’s fault, when they took over the shop the first thing on their minds wasn’t “Oh, we had better change the carpet in case it causes Hallucinations!! But we can make a difference by learning from these experiences and by thinking about things like this when choosing carpets ECT for hospitals, health centres and care homes ECT.
As for me? As always I had Elaine by my side, but truth be known? I hope this doesn’t happen too often and will try and look at the carpet next time before I enter a shop, because please believe me, it’s a not a very nice thing to happen.
Besy wishes, Norrms and family xxxxxxxxxxxxxx