Simon Says…

As time went by, I noticed mom sometimes copes by copying.

If we were walking about in a shopping mall, she would “play” follow the leader. Walk after the leader, stop when the leader stopped, and look at what the leader looked at.

During meals, I noticed she would copy which utensils I picked up and how I used them. For example, if I put down the chopsticks and picked up the spoon for soup, she would do the same soon after. Nonetheless, she still used all the utensils with skill.

We took a short flight recently, and because of some last-minute changes, mom ended up across the aisle from me, with a tall handsome stranger between us. During the flight, I glanced across at her, and was amused and surprised at what I saw…

The man had flipped down the food tray so that he could rest his hands on it, as he was too tall for the armrests. Mom had done exactly the same! So there they were, side by side, food trays down, hands together in repose, exactly the same way.

I’m glad he didn’t mind.

I only wonder if other Alzheimer’s persons did the same… Please share.


8 thoughts on “Simon Says…”

  1. I enjoyed your post. I just thought I would respond to your questions about other people with Alzheimer’s. My dad doesn’t cope like that, or at least, not yet. He sleeps a lot and rarely begins a conversation, though he will respond to questions others ask him. I really enjoy reading your blog though. It helps me cope with dad’s Alzheimer’s to read blogs by others on the same subject.


    1. Thank you for your comment. I find blogging clears my mind too and appreciate being able to read real-life examples about what happens, and how others manage. I wonder if copying reflects an Asian characteristic, to do the right thing, and not stick out.


  2. My Father in Law does that. When we eat out he will always order exactly the same as my husband, who jokes he wants a bag on his head.


    1. My mom used to do that until she was ticked off for “not using your brain”. Now she will keep looking at the menu until I suggest 2 choices, and she picks one. I always try to suggest something soft, because she has trouble chewing hard foods.


      1. He always chooses a different option from the menu, but when the waiter comes to take our order says “I’ll have the same”


  3. This made me cry and that is a good thing.

    I had forgotten my mom doing this in the early years! She had alcoholics dementia and it presents differently than other dementias, but this is the same.

    It was amazing to watch her try and adapt.

    Thank you for so beautifully illustrating one aspect of the walk with dementia.

    Peace, Jen


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