They were just cheap trinkets really, a pocket knife, a Zippo lighter and a Timex watch but they meant the world to me, they represented a time when life was simple and less painful. Those trinkets were proof that in another lifetime, Dad lived a normal life. As much as I love him and try to join him where he is now, the fact is, life is vastly different for our whole family because of Alzheimer’s.
This disease slowly robs us of those we love, a little at a time, painful inch by painful inch. It is a painful, powerful and devastating disease that alters the lives of the whole family.
However no matter what is going on presently, we have memories for a reason, to help us as we journey into the future with Alzheimer’s .
My Dad has impressed me in many ways some from my childhood, some from his presence in my children’s lives and some I have yet to fully discover.
Those trinkets the knife, the lighter and the watch were more than cheap mementos, they were proof that Wayne Henry Raasch walked as a stong husband, father and grandfather.
He lived a rich and full life, he had a wife who adored him, children who looked at him as a hero and grandchildren who found calm reassurance in his presence. in fact, wen still have Dad but he can no longer fullfill those roles. We mourn Dad though he still lives. Or it may be better to look at it as we mourne the Dad of our past while he still lives.
He is still an everyday part of our lives, we still gravitate to where he is. He is still a force to be reckoned with. He can whip out one liners like no other, but in the next moment we are sharing a conversation with him while he is watching a cow (who thinks he is a reindeer) on the roof of the house next door. He seems to be enjoying whatever it is he is seeing, so we settle in and enjoy the cow/reindeer also. It is not an ideal place to be, nor a particularly comfortable place but we take comfort in the fact that we at least still have that place.
So while he has no memory of the lighter, knife and watch he carried every day………………..i remember and I thank my great God for those memories.
I love you Dad,