Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Energy of Others

No. This isn't a Halloween post. It's actually about the energy a person can give off even when they don't know it.

There are people I've come across that just rub me the wrong way. I can't explain why, I don't wish them harm, but I just don't want to be around them. With friends and classmates from decades ago coming out of the woodwork on Facebook, I have chosen not to pursue some of the people my friends have reconnected with because of my experience with them -- or their energy.

I don't know why, but I've been thinking a lot about how the energies of others impact a person. I don't often share this thought with others because I'm not sure people would get it or think I'm a bit nuts. However, yesterday, I had a very interesting conversation during a care meeting with the staff of the nursing home my mother lives in.

My mom has Alzheimer's. She hasn't recognized me in over 2 years, and really doesn't know anyone at this point. She may know my dad, but can't remember if he's visited her 5 minutes after he's left. During the meeting I found it interesting when I posed the following question to the 3 staff members: "Is my mom more lively when she participates in activities by herself or when my dad is there?"

The 3 staff members looked at one another and the response I got fascinated me -- I was told she is lively when alone. In fact, she becomes docile and quiet if my dad is with her. It was interesting to me because as I grew older, my mom HATED to participate with my dad in activities (e.g., church groups, senior center) because she said my dad over took the whole room. If she signed up for something and he tried to join her, she'd quit. She told me she hated how he had to be the center of attention.

I began to wonder, if my mom doesn't always remember my dad when he visits her, how does she know to be non-responsive when they are at an activity together? I wonder if her intuition takes over and has her know there's something about this man she doesn't appreciate in group settings. I wonder.


Brian Miller said...

hmmm interesting on her responses, perhaps there is more going on there than is realized...

JeannetteLS said...

I have heard of quite a few patients with that robbing condition, who retain a gut knowledge of the person long after they cannot find the specifics. A knowledge of their energy perhaps?

MY neurosurgeon was a central nervous system specialist. He said to me, the first time I met him, "The more we learn about the brain, the less we know for sure. There's no such thing as an expert. Not really. So much of what we know does not explain our brains by one tenth."

So it would not surprise me if people with Alzheimer's perhaps simply tap into some other interior area we do not understand, but the centers for our daily lives and memories are dimmed. It wouldn't surprise me at all if you mother somehow knows.

My mom slipped into a light coma the last four days of her lives. Looking into her eyes was like looking into a small infant's eyes--surprisingly, frighteningly blank.

Except sometimes when I walked into the room and she would go, "You, you, you, YOU tell them... tell them what we had, what we had. You" And her eyes would follow me, riveted, all the while not knowing how to use a spoon. She knew I was hers, but not who I was.

And may I simply wish you strength and peace as you walk through this with your mother? It has to be hard.

blueviolet said...

That is just so interesting, and I'd be wondering if there isn't something that really does remember somehow. But I'm so sorry that she's living with Alzheimer's.

By the way, I totally agree about the energy of others. I really don't care to be around those who suck the happy out of life. Life is too short for that!

So. Cal. Gal said...

I do think there's something to your theory.

I have a cousin with Alzheimer's who doesn't recognize her husband anymore. She's even afraid of him at times even though they've been married almost 40 years. Makes me wonder what's going through her mind.

Little Ms Blogger said...

Brian - they have been married 63 years. Other odd thing is that she was a smoker on-and-off for 83 years, however, as soon as she went really downhill with the memory she no longer wanted a cigarette or even craved one. She didn't remember smoking. Tobacco companies would probably love that statistic for their defense.

JeannetteLS - interesting. I didn't know that, just found it interesting that she reacts that way to my dad. I love how your neurosurgeon is so honest.

I'm sorry your mom suffered so. My mom is actually very happy living in her own little world. She lives in the White House and takes care of wounded soldiers.

BV- I'm glad it's just not me who notices the energies of others.

So Cal Gal - There has to be something. I'm told my mom flirts with the male nurses, but sometimes shuts down when my dad is around. They've been married 63 years.

DSS said...

First, let me tell you that I am sending BIG hugs to you. My dad had early onlset Alzheimer's, and passed away 3 years ago. He didn't recognize me for 3 years, and it was heartbreaking. And trying. And sad. Even though he was happy , like your mom. Thank God for small favors :)

So, that being said....know that I'm in your corner rooting for you. Because some days you just need someone in your corner when you are dealing with Alzheimer's.

The question you posed, and your thoughts, are really, really interesting! I read your comment about the smoking, and that seems to completely disprove the situation with your dad. And still...she reacts that way. Hmmm....

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