The Longest Day 2019: Raising Money And Awareness To Help End Alzheimer's

Every year, there are a couple events that help raise money and awareness for Alzheimer's research and care. One of them is known as The Longest Day, which is on the Summer Solstice every year to raise awareness for the amount of time and care that is required for someone with the disease. Many caregivers work tirelessly day and night with little to no breaks to care for their loved ones and their loved ones must live in the new world brought about by their disease.

So as part of The Longest Day, people choose an activity to help them in the hopes to raise money and awareness, and for some to take a day to do something they enjoy as well. You can sign up for your own event or find one to donate to by clicking the link here. Or if you would like to help someone local, my friend Sue is a local librarian who chose to read as her task and is raising money in honor of her mother and you can find her fundraiser page here.

My plan for today is use my site and social media accounts to feature information, Alzheimer's facts and support anyone or any business who is raising money for the cause. I am a caregiver for my mother with Alzheimer's and since I will be with mom all day, I am choosing to use my efforts on social media to help make a difference.

If you know someone personally impacted by the disease and need more information, please reach out to your local Alzheimer's Association chapter and they will provide you the resources you need and answer your questions. The link to the CNY chapter is right here if you would like to learn more about the services they provide or other events.

This year I have decided to also start a team in the fall to Walk To End Alzheimer's right here in Syracuse. The event this year in the Syracuse area will be Sunday September 29th at the SRC Arena on the OCC campus and this is my first time participating. If you would like to donate to our team, I would greatly appreciate it or maybe even sharing the link, which you can find here, If you are outside of the Syracuse area, you can find other walk events here.

Also earlier this week, I was sitting with my mom at the dinner table and I was inspired to write a poem titled "Cindy Smiles (#EndAlz)". I was talking to her and she was in a good mood and I said, "I love when my favorite Cindy smiles" and suddenly I had the idea to write about it. My mother no longer knows me or others by name so I stopped calling her mom a while back and call her Cindy so she knows I am talking to her. She does stay generally happy and content but she has had times where she isn't feeling well or tired or overwhelmed and I do my best to make her feel as happy and loved as possible.

And on that note, I will end this post with the short poem I wrote that I hope sheds light on life as a caregiver and those with Alzheimer's. For many, it is a struggle to keep their loved one happy and they miss the good times they had with them so you thrive on those moments while you can.

Cindy Smiles (#EndAlz)

She has Alzheimer's that's taken over her brain
In some ways unfortunately, she'll never be the same
Some days are tough and such a mental strain
Most days you try to survive and hide all the pain

But when Cindy smiles, I know it'll be a better day
When Cindy smiles, I see the woman the disease took away
Some days my anxiety is up and I worry if she's okay
Then when Cindy smiles, I know we will win today

It means she's not sick or feeling agitated or annoyed
When Cindy smiles, it's one less thing Alzheimer's destroyed
She no longer remembers me or remembers my name
But when Cindy smiles, I say there's my favorite Cindy again

It sucks that Alzheimer's has no cure for her and all the others
Because we deserve to have our fathers, wives and mothers
Sadly one day this will all come to an end for her and her brain
And the memories of Cindy's smiles will be all that remains