We all have defining moments and cherished items that bring us back to meaningful times in our lives. Here, we are given a window into some of those moments through curated videos from These Things Foundation. From memories with beloved family pets to items that represent a treasure of a family member no longer with us, these videos capture the unique ways we all connect.
FACING ALZHEIMER’S AS A DAUGHTER
Donna’s father was showing signs of Alzheimer’s — including misplacing his belongings, repeating things and becoming increasingly frustrated — while battling other health issues. Here Donna speaks to how she faced being the mother of a toddler as her father was simultaneously experiencing heightened needs due to Alzheimer’s disease. “When memories are so tucked away in the cobwebs of your mind that you’re unable to access them, when stories we shared together a week ago are lost … it’s a gradual demise, and I saw it happening,” Donna said. Watch as she tells her story:
Desiree’s reason to smile is a hand-painted family photo from a Caribbean trip that includes three generations, including Desiree, her mother, and her daughter Victoria. Here, she shares memories of her grandmother — a woman whose house was always open to her family and her church — who eventually began to confuse Desiree and Victoria during her battle with Alzheimer's disease. Desiree says she gets her “fancy” style from her grandmother, something that was a special connection between the two women.
Jessica knows the heartbreak of Alzheimer’s. She lost her paternal grandma, a woman she spent decades making memories with, to the disease. Find out what Jessica most wants to remember about their bond and hear the story of her grandfather’s dedication to caring for his wife, which Jessica describes as “a beautiful example of true love.”
BONDING WITH FAMILY THROUGH A LOVE OF ANIMALS
Sheri’s mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2002. It took four years to get her diagnosis. It was then that Sheri learned there is no cure, an experience she calls “eye-opening.” Here, she remembers her mom’s special bond with her animals and tells us the stories behind the cherished photos of furry friends displayed in her parents’ home.
FACING DIFFICULT MOMENTS, REMEMBERING GOOD MEMORIES
Tamra shares a moment of heartache: her grandmother, who is living with dementia, doesn’t recognize her; this is a painful and difficult moment so many families facing Alzheimer’s can relate to, which Tamra says, “hurts you to your core.” Here she recalls memories from her days as ‘the favorite grandchild,’ living just around the corner from her grandma. Tamra says that she always felt very loved and cared for by her grandma, a fashionista and a cook who served up a family shrimp recipe that Tamra thinks about to this day.
WITNESSING ALZHEIMER’S AS A FRIEND
John fondly remembers his college friend’s mother, a warm woman he says “had to hug me every time she saw me.” Here he shares his decision to go and visit her, not knowing how quickly her Alzheimer’s disease had progressed. Watch as he shares what lesson he learned about how Alzheimer’s affects the ones we love, and those left behind.
We welcome you to share your defining moment or cherished object in the comments below.
About the videographer: Daniel Klutznick’s father and paternal grandparents battled and passed away from complications of Alzheimer’s disease. A Chicago-based photographer, Daniel created These Things Foundation to provide a therapeutic outlet for families experiencing Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, along with raising funds toward finding a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. Learn more about These Things Foundation.
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