Another VideoWest film of Gerda: “Downhill from There”
Yesterday afternoon I got a note from videographer Josh Weathers that the latest short film VideoWest is making of me is out. It’s called: Downhill from there. Peter and I watched it right away, and it was not very uplifting. I am still glad VideoWest made it, because it is very important to me to be honest about my dementia and how it will affect my future–especially to myself. Peter’s sadness, though, is the cost of our decision to be honest and upfront about my dementia. Despite my justifications, we needed to move on to something more cheerful. Fortunately we had planned to learn some new salsa steps, for which Peter is always scouring the internet. The moral of the story: When things go downhill, dance!
We’re continuing our series with Gerda Saunders. Gerda has progressive dementia, and she’s been letting us follow her along the way. Recently, we went with Gerda and her husband to the doctor for her latest evaluation, a series of memory tests. The results gave her a sense of urgency, and oddly, relief. As Gerda told us, “I’m really not making this up.”
July 20, 2016 @ 1:14 pm
Like Ellen Degeneres says, lets dance, ?
July 29, 2016 @ 5:04 pm
Ellen de Generis is such an upbeat presence, I’ll remember to put her on when my feet does not get that itch! Hope you guys are doing well. Looks like a lot of fun on Facebook!
July 20, 2016 @ 4:08 pm
My friend, your credibility is still strong and intact. Peter is wise and dance was a discovery I made late in life.
The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance. Alan Watts
Better still is Nietzsche’s; A day without dancing is a day wasted, as Nietzsche once said… Or, more exactly :
“And lost be the day to us in which a measure hath not been danced.”
Because of you I’m wiser, feel no longer alone and I’m enjoying many small things often missed entirely. Dance on for all of us.
July 29, 2016 @ 5:02 pm
Dear Michael, thinking of you constantly since I heard your bad news the other day. Hope you are getting proper pain control and some rest. Do let me know how things are going. It means so much to me that I met you and know how much our experiences resonate. Thanks for the lovely quotes–I’ll keep dancing, even when it changes to the dance of the macabre!
July 20, 2016 @ 4:33 pm
Thank you for sharing. Your brave words illuminate a path that would otherwise be dark. You’re helping many people.
July 29, 2016 @ 5:00 pm
Dear Dianne, How kind of you to be in touch. I am grateful that my story is helpful to you and others. I wish you all the best with your life, all the more if you are close to someone with dementia. Warmest greetings to you and yours.
July 24, 2016 @ 3:27 am
Dearest Gerda, you are so brave and so is Peter; ek weet dat julle saamhuil en ook alleen huil; ons trane loop ook hier vir julle uitdagings en pyn. But I know that, thank goodness, you also continue to have fun.
Keep dancing! Much love, Ria
July 29, 2016 @ 4:59 pm
My liefste Ria, I certainly am not brave, but Peter is very much so. Die geskenk om saam met mens se geliefde partner oud te word is so groot my hart kan dit skaars hou. So baie dankie vir julle meegevoel. Soos jy sien, het ons nog steeds baie pret saam. Ek hoop dit gaan goed met julle. Ek sal Peter aansit dat ons weer Skype.xoxox
July 24, 2016 @ 8:29 am
Very interested in how you’re doing and wishing you good times. Vicki x
July 29, 2016 @ 4:56 pm
Dear Vicki, How wonderful to hear from you. Thanks so much for being in touch and for your good wishes. I hope you and your family are doing well–think of you often.x0x0x
July 24, 2016 @ 10:12 am
How brave you both are Gerda and Peter! What a lesson to all of us who complain and fret about our very ordinary daily travails. You inspire me to make the most of every moment of every day.
July 29, 2016 @ 4:55 pm
Dear Carmen, thanks so much for your very kind and supportive contact. I really do not feel like a lesson or role model–the reason I am able to stay cheerful is because of the way happiness is configured in my brain. Nevertheless, if I can help remind others to live in every moment, my story is well worth the telling. I wish you and your family all of the best.
August 5, 2016 @ 2:36 pm
Thanks so much for your kind words, interest, and support. I KNOW that you are not one who has let moments go by without fully living–I wish you the best to keep doing just that!
July 24, 2016 @ 2:39 pm
All the best, thinking of you on your journey.
Thank you for sharing this with us.
July 29, 2016 @ 4:52 pm
Dear Yvonne, so lovely to hear from you. Thanks so much for your support and good wishes. I’m sorry that I don’t know where you fit into the family tree–I would love it if you would let me know.
July 24, 2016 @ 11:26 pm
You may have lost some of your mathematical skills but your ability to write, explain and describe what you are going through still is superior to so many of us. Just another one of your incredible gifts.
And Kathy is correct – let’s dance!
July 29, 2016 @ 4:51 pm
Dearest Kathy, you are over-the-top sweet about my language skills–its amazing what sticks in the brain when so much is slipping away. I miss you. Time for lunch again?
July 30, 2016 @ 3:10 pm
I agree with Kathy 🙂 and dancing, SO good for the soul, keep dancing and shining bright.
August 5, 2016 @ 2:34 pm
Thanks for your lovely comment, Corrine. You are my example of dancing and shining in the midst of the worst the universe can pitch you! xoxox
July 31, 2016 @ 5:36 pm
Ummm dancing isn’t good for my soul but Gerda sure is! xox Shen
August 5, 2016 @ 2:33 pm
I have a photo of you dancing with AJ at Jake’s wedding. How soon will you have coffee with me if I promise not to post it on my blog? (Actually, it is totally post-worthy, but I’d rather keep my sistership with you!)
August 6, 2016 @ 7:21 am
Liefste Gerdia. Wat n sterk band is die liefde tussen n man en vrou nie. Dans aa jy bly is maar dans veral as die donkerte wil insluip en oorneem. Sterkte
August 6, 2016 @ 9:13 am
Dankie vir jou bemoedigende woorde, Andrika. En dankie vir wat jy se oor my en Peter. Hy was nog altyd my rots, soos sy naam se.