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When I have projects to do that does wonders for defeating the frustrations. When I don't have a project I often find myself sitting here and getting more and more frustrated when I can't think of a project I can afford to do.
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Frustrations In and Out

It gets pretty full in my head sometimes

Text and photo by Tom Hintz

Posted – 12-2-2015

One of the things that has to be difficult for those supporting someone with Alzheimer's to understand is the growing levels of frustration that can become part of daily life. I have never been a good “waiter” and now with my life being complicated by Alzheimer's frustration is a growing daily challenge.

After being diagnosed with Alzheimer's one of the first “freedoms” to go away was driving when and where I wanted. While I can rationalize that limitation it remains a source of frustration because I am essentially stranded at home. I chose to work from home years before the Alzheimer's diagnosis but I was able to drive whenever I needed to. But now with driving limited to weekends and then only to the flying field and back I am finding myself growing increasingly frustrated by the lack of mobility during the week.

When I am working on a project like building a plane or reviewing a product that effort maintains my focus which subdues the frustrations. I still have the near constant short term memory issues such as forgetting what I wanted to do next but when my mind is occupied with a project I am better able to deal with those kinds of frustrations associated with Alzheimer's.

Between the issues surrounding Alzheimer's and my age working at a traditional job is more of a fantasy than a possibility. That also means the budget for doing projects is nearly non-existent. I do try to conjure up “free” projects that actually have some merit but the futility of that thought process just produces more frustration.

Working on projects is the est therapy I can find that can be done during the week in my home.
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It surprises me that factors like weather and waiting for the weekend when I can drive to the flying field don’t bother me nearly as much as I would have thought. Sure I’d like to be able to go to the field every day and always have great flying weather but my head still recognizes that Mother Nature does what she wants and I have to accept that no matter how grudgingly.

When I write these little looks into my life with Alzheimer's I try to end them in a logical conclusion or solution but that just isn’t going to happen this time. The combination of Alzheimer's, the related lifestyle restrictions and being “retired” add up to far too many sources of frustration to be solved here or maybe anywhere. But I am trying and remain hopeful that the next project will come along soon. Completing each project reassures me that I am still relevant and making sense to others. In the midst of frustration I seldom make sense to myself. And yes, that is frustrating as well.

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