Losing a Loved One to Dementia During the Pandemic Lockdown


Dementia is certainly not a battle for those living with but a battle for people around them.

Despite their dementia, patients can still dress up, show up, eat, drink, and speak well except that sometimes it doesn’t end well. They will tend to mess up somewhere, somehow, and will never accept the fact that they are wrong and believe that they are always right.

My mother had dementia during her late seventies and as our saying goes, being old is being weak and wrong. But not my mother. She felt young, strong, and absolutely right. I could never point out anything wrong in her, therefore I nicknamed her VSOP (Very Strong Old Person).

She could climb up and down the staircase several times in a day without being exhausted. She could even climb up the ladder should anyone not noticed. She does things that are mostly impossible and unpredictable and may even turn hazardous too, especially when she’s in the kitchen – it turns into Hell’s Kitchen.

I took care of my mother for a good year, from February 2019 ’til March 2020. I had no choice but to leave her, however, as she became rebellious. She made up stories that are not hard for others to believe, i.e. she hurts me but she spins the yarn in every direction, made herself a narcissist.

The sad thing is that, soon after I left her, it was like a balloon had lost air. She breathed her last on the 40th day without me – on 10th April 2020. I was not even able to attend her funeral as travelling was not permissible during the COVID-19 lockdown.

May her soul rest in peace.

Contributed by:

Lalitha A, 57 years old, Malaysia