Ben’s Story: Alzheimer’s Disease and Memory Care, Part 1


Ben grew up in Nevada, in a suburb just below Las Vegas.  He grew up in the dry desert heat, played baseball and golf, and loved swimming.  He was an all-star athlete at his school and graduated at the top of his class, where he then went on to Harvard. He studied philosophy, despite all the warnings from his parents that philosophy would get him nowhere in life. Right after graduating from Harvard, he met Lora, married her, and settled down in a suburb in Colorado after she got a job at a prestigious art museum there.  He found a job as a university professor in philosophy (and made a phone call to his parents).  


Lora grew up in Miami.  Her life was all humidity and sunshine and art classes.  She played piano, soccer, and attended pottery, painting, and drawing classes.  In high school, she won awards for her sketches and graduated with passing grades, because a thriving artist can’t be bothered with math and science.  She went to UCLA for their fine arts program, met Ben after she graduated, and got hired at a prestigious art museum in Colorado.  She asked him if he’d be willing to follow her there.  He was, and so they got married and made the move.  


Their life in Colorado was idyllic.  They both loved their jobs, and despite their upbringings in the heat (dry or humid), they took to the mountain climate of Colorado quickly.  After six years together, they had twins, one boy and one girl.  Life went on as life does; work and play, hiking and drawing and teaching.  


Until one day, Ben started forgetting things.  It began small: he couldn’t find his keys or he couldn’t remember the name of his favorite professor at Harvard.  But after a few months, Lora noticed it seemed to be more than “average” forgetfulness.  He called her one day from the grocery store five minutes from their house, and asked her, “Hey, how do I get home from Market again?”


Two months later and Lora realized, as she sat on their bed mindlessly sketching, that Ben wasn’t going to get better.  He wasn’t going to all of a sudden be back to his normal self.  He couldn’t remember how to get home from most places, he couldn’t recall events from the day before or extended families’ names.  Jace and Lea, their beautiful grown-up children, had noticed too.  It was hard not to. They’d all tried to pretend it wasn’t happening.  Not Ben;  not their smart, self-assured, always-thinking-professor, husband and dad.


To be continued….


Check in with us next month for part 2 of Ben’s Story.  Assisted living residencies all over the country attempt to help people who can no longer function in their normal lives.  One of those residencies is the BayView Senior Assisted Living home in Point Loma dedicated to the gentle care of seniors with Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia.   Call today to take a tour and find out if this group of experienced and caring staff is the best fit for your loved one.