I struggle for words now, simple single syllable words that should come easily to me. They elude me - flitting around beyond my reach so I am often unable to complete a simple question. Names, places of my past are fading. This frightens me beyond anything else. My mother is one of four sisters. The eldest, Alice, has senile dementia. The one right below my mother, Golda, has Alzheimer's. Only the youngest, Lois, has, so far, escaped this disease. My mother's family has other mental disorders. Her older brother Tom is schizophrenic, she has a niece that is paranoid. My brother Howard was bi-polar with schizoid affects; I'm clinically depressed. My brother David suffers from strokes that have ravaged his body. Only my sister Cathie seems to have avoided anything neurological (although that's just a matter of opinion - I've always thought she was a basket case). I fear losing my mind. I know, intellectually, that being a caregiver exacts a huge toll upon the brain. I'm tired, overwhelmed and this can effect the thought processes. I've also read that I'm burning brain cells that will never regenerate. As a writer I worry about my future in the world of words. If I can't remember how to spell something, there's always a dictionary. But not being able to think of a word - I don't know of any book that will help with that. Of course, my mind automatically goes to Alzheimer's. I think that's normal.
I saw on the news one day that people who worry alot have a higher incidence of developing Alzheimer's. Great, something else to worry about.