A Dementia Returnee

What would it be like if a person with dementia could be cured and then be able to describe her journey to and back from this disease? I let this play out in my imagination in my gentle science fiction book, Curiosity Seekers. And if you are curious about such a premise, you can read two excerpts below. The first excerpt is from the beginning of Chapter Two, “A Dementia Returnee.” It refers to the main characters and their financial planner Virginia, who gets the disease and is one of the first cured. The second excerpt is where Virginia starts to recover, and with the help of a researcher, starts a diary of her experiences “returning” from dementia. Later in the chapter, she continues recovering and keeps her diary, but some new challenges arise. You want to know what they are? You’ll have to read the book!

Here are the two excerpts:

“Even a recluse knows that around the year 2056 patients with dementia had become as obsolete as doorknobs. But only a precious few individuals are aware of how the initial returnees from this malady reassembled their minds. Even less known is what the experience felt like to them on their way back, which by my sights is the most fascinating of all. As it so happens, Muriel and Gomer Ackerman witnessed this remarkable part of medical history starting in the year 2053 because of their association with their financial planner and friend Virginia Boyden. Upon her retirement in 2047 she became very good friends with Muriel. When Muriel had made that card to cheer Virginia up after fifteen years of service, neither realized then that the planner was exhibiting the first signs of dementia.”

“Dear Sweet Diary: I feel like I am catching up with the pace of what is occurring, like a rocket catching up to some fleeing asteroid and now able to see what is on it. A researcher here named Dereck explained that I am taking a drug that might make me healthy again. I’m not sure what kind of health he is talking about, but it seems that I can grasp an ever-expanding environment around me. I feel like reality is resuming its lodging in some previously vacated spaces in my brain. Yes there’s this nursing home, for that is where I am obviously. Did I have amnesia after all? Dereck has explained, but I still can’t make out what happened. The nursing facility is in a town not terribly far from where I used to live, and visitors come in from the outside, and I can remember more and more about what they have to do with me and me with them. I can talk in a code they can understand more easily, and they have stopped looking dismayed like before when I had randomly tossed out words hoping some of them would land in the zone of appropriate responses. I am still missing some words, but my visitors, especially my family, can now help me put together a fairly close estimate of what I really want to say.”

Write or imagine your own ending to this story, or find the book at https://www.amazon.com/Curiosity-Seekers-Karen-B-Kaplan/dp/1541326946

For my microblog, go to https://twitter.com/chaplainkkaplan


One thought on “A Dementia Returnee

  1. Cathy says:

    What an interesting idea, returning from dementia.


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