What To Do About Driving

When I got home from Dad’s last evening, I discovered that Kate had run into something in her car. Her right front headlight was shattered, the bumper was loose, and the hood of the car crimpled a little. She told me that she bumped into something in the Belk parking lot. She simply hadn’t seen it because it was dark.

By itself, this is nothing to worry about; however, this has happened multiple times. It makes me wonder now if it was AD that played a role in other incidents that occurred before her diagnosis. I am able to recall that she had a panic attack when she got lost trying to find my brother’s house in 2006 when she went to Birmingham for our niece’sshower. I seem to recall that Kate was concerned about having AD at that time. We played as if it were a simple case of being geographically challenged as we continue to do. It is very clear now that it is more than that, but it makes it easier to say something about being geographically challenged. The big question for me is when does she stop driving. I know that will be a low blow. It also means that I need to be around her even more than I am now. That would mean going into the office less which I could do although it provides a nice escape for me.

Shortly after returning from dinner, I gave her a hug and told her I loved her. She said, “I like having you home with me.” She has mentioned this on numerous occasions, and I take it as a feeling of security she has when I am around. She encounters so many situations in which she feels the need to ask me how to solve some problem. When I am not there she simply has to endure her frustration. To some extent she wants to do this. Neither of us wants me to do everything for her. In fact, last night she asked what she could do to help with dinner. I started to say, “nothing” but I told her she could get the plates ready. Her facial expression told me she was pleased that she could play a role in dinner. I generally shy away from asking her to help with dinner because I feel she will do things differently than I want them done, but I may need to change this approach.

Yesterday afternoon I spoke on the phone with our pastor. I had called to invite him to our Sunday school class Christmas party. He is the only one that knows about Kate except for our attorney and the State Farm attorney who is representing us in the accident case in Alabama. He asked about Kate and to his credit asked if I were home with her. I told him I was and that she was on the phone in the next room. For that reason we did not say much. He did comment that in the times he has been with her he could not tell that she has AD. I told him one had to be around her as I am to recognize it but that it is easy to see from my vantage point. He then said that his only clue might be that she seems to look to me when we are together as though she is looking to me for security. I told him that is the case – that she depends on me for that security.