Personal Narrative: The Unabated Storm

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The Unabated Storm
Bedridden during a recent hospital stay, Gale Monaghan was as tenacious as ever ordering the staff around and flirting with one of her young male nurses. “I’m having a hard time remembering what brought me here. Trisha tells me I fell unconscious, but I don 't think that’s true.” For the better part of the last five years, Gale has been in and out of hospitals. Coming as no surprise to her family, doctors have diagnosed Monaghan with Alzheimer 's.
Forgetting when her appointments were or where she placed something she just had were little more than an annoyance. Consequently, waiting so long for a diagnosis caused her symptoms to worsen. With the culmination of undiagnosed Alzheimer 's and increasingly bizarre episodes, Gale finally submitted to our pleas to get checked out. For the last couple of years, my mom 's memory problems have been sort of a running joke in our family. Using humor was my mom’s way of dealing with the scary reality that she, our venerable matriarch, was sick.
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She put the food in the oven to finish cooking and took her dog, Ben, on a walk around the block. By the time Gale reached the end of her walk, she started to feel like something was very, very wrong. Around this time, we pull into the driveway to see Gale sprinting back into the house and black smoke billowing out. Gale had left a plastic pan to cook in the oven, which caused a fire that nearly burned her house down. All I could hear after the fiasco was her laughing, “Lunch is on the roof,” our family’s colloquialism for ‘something has died.’ Family lunch had been cancelled

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