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Dameron Family

My mother, Saundra Dameron, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s when I was in the 7thgrade. She was in her mid-50’s. At the time I didn’t understand how much that would affect everyone’s lives. She had Early On-Set Alzheimer’s, so the disease progressed quickly. It wasn’t long before she needed assistance to perform daily functions. By my 8thgrade year, I realized what was going to happen. Knowing I could not do anything to stop it led to a profound sadness, which plunged me into depression. It was so very painful to watch her lose her memory and her abilities to do simple tasks and to know it would only get worse. Even though she had Alzheimer’s, we were still able to connect through laughter and joy we found in being with each other. We watched reruns of "I Love Lucy.” This had been a favorite pastime since I was a little kid. We had a dog named Boo that she loved. We played with Boo and taught her tricks. The disease was always the "elephant in the room,” even when we were having a good time. Through it all, she was strong and continued to fight. By the end, however, she was no longer able to speak, walk or feed herself. I lost my mom before she actually died. I still hold on to the memories we had and the pictures I have of her in better days. I find comfort in the Word of God . . . knowing His promise that death is not final. I find comfort in the words of the song, "Through the Valley”: "It may not be the way I would have chosen when you lead me through a world that’s not my home. But you never said it would be easy. You only said I’d never go alone.”

I have joy along with my sadness because of the hope that I will see her again. I love you, Mom.