I have known for a decade and a half that this diagnosis was a fatal blow. Fatal to our lives together, fatal to our future, and literally fatal to my sweet and ornery love, although he always refused to believe it.
Sometimes i suspected it would kill me too.
In the strange way common to dementia victims, although he grieved and protested and denied and fought mightily against the slow stripping of his abilities, nonetheless he never believed it could kill him.
He sometimes tried to plan for leaving and going into a care home, and to be noble about it. He was diligent in looking for a new man for me, as if that was important for my survival, but never factored in his own demise.
And along with him, I have struggled and fought and protested and advocated for him and organised for better care every step of this long slow decline. We have been and are now intimate and loving to a level I never would have imagined. Stripped to our souls, we know who we are.
We are a team, but we are losing this battle together one day at a time. All we have to look for now is comfort.
Every good day, every smile, every dance step, every coherent word, is a victory. A moment of bliss, but only a respite on the very long road to defeat.
What I personally selfishly need is an end to this unending trauma, and I cannot bear that end. I cannot imagine how to survive that, although I know so many have done so. It must be possible, but how?
It is inevitable but that does not – and has not – ever made it easier to accept.