In the last month, my dad has declined considerably. He doesn’t like to go out (which, on the bright side, might help curtail his escapes and hitchhiking with strangers) and just seems to be waiting for direction. Not like Dad at all–he’s always been a man firmly in charge of his life. In fact, that’s been the hardest piece of dealing with his Alzheimer’s–he’s still in charge even though his judgment is gone.

My sister was visiting over the weekend and took Dad to church on Sunday. We have a successful routine worked out: I will call the Board and Care an hour before I pick Dad up on Sundays, and the caregivers are able to persuade him to take a shower and change into fresh clothes for church.

Hygiene isn’t high on the priority list of Alzheimer’s patients.

Anyway, Wendy picked Dad up, freshly scrubbed, and went to church with him. At the end of the service, they went up to the altar to take communion. Wendy put her arm around Dad, carefully helping him get the bread and dip it in the grape juice.

A touching moment.

But a snapshot of how far Dad has slipped in the last year.

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