The Mirror.

dementia by day ekit

Get Dementia By Day's most popular eKit

Check out our most popular item, the Embracing Their Reality(TM) eKit and find out why we took the time to get the phrase trademarked! Learn what makes Rachael Wonderlin different from any other dementia educator out there. Also available: the new Embracing Their Reality(TM) downloadable graphic, only in the eStore! Click the graphic or visit "Shop" above!

I held Ingrid’s hand as we walked down the hallway to her room. Ingrid did not speak much, and when she did, her sentences were short and simple.
I was not sure how much she understood, but it was always easy to coax a smile out of her. 

Ingrid was pleasant and peaceful. Most days, Ingrid spent her time picking up objects from one room and taking them to another. Her own room was a treasure trove of lamps, stuffed animals, and anything else she found interesting.

Ingrid was able to toilet mostly without assistance, but she needed cueing. I helped her get to the toilet and helped her get her pants down. She used the bathroom, and then I helped her move to the sink. 

I turned on the water and she began doing the same thing she’d been doing for decades: washing her hands with soap and water and looking at her own face in the mirror. She finished up and I handed her a towel to dry her hands.

Ingrid continued to look quietly at her own reflection.

“What do you think, Ingrid?” I asked, pointing to the mirror.

She gave a short laugh. “Pitiful,” she said.

“Pitiful?” I repeated. “Why pitiful?”

“My hair…is old,” she said, with a small smile of acknowledgement, now looking down at her shoes.

“I think it looks beautiful,” I smiled back.

Ingrid gave another quick, jovial laugh and finished drying her hands. She turned from the sink and walked out of the bathroom with me by her side.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on email

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

rachael photo

Rachael Wonderlin has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of two published books with Johns Hopkins University Press. She owns Dementia By Day, a dementia care consulting company.

16 things poster
Get the FREE “16 Things” poster!

16 Things I Would Want If I Got Dementia

Get the FREE “16 Things” poster for your personal use—or better yet—your dementia care community’s staff break room!

I wrote this poem years ago, but to date, it’s the most popular piece I’ve ever created.

16 things poster
Shopping Cart