Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Halloween Parade

Last night was the big Halloween Parade in town. We had hoped to bring Patti home for dinner and parade watching. The dinner part went OK.


Trying to get her dressed in warmer clothing for an outdoor evening parade in October was bushwhacked by a bout of obsessive behavior over her shoes.


In recent years these bouts of obsessive behavior can erupt spontaneously over the weirdest of things. Neurologists explain it has to do with MS related damage to the frontal lobe of her brain. Due to myelin deterioration the neurological transmission of signals that process information and how to react to it, basically are stuck in a loop.


Nothing can deter her until the spell has run its course. Tonight she decided to obsess over removing and replacing her shoes. Suddenly Patti ‘discovered’ her shoes as if they were ‘the wheel’ to early man.


Patti may even react aggressively to interference, with foul and abusive language even accelerating to physical posturing. From the outside looking in it is bizarre and impossible to comprehend.


With the parade forgotten by Patti and ‘under the spell’ of her shoes I returned Patti to professional care (still repeatedly changing her shoes through the ride).


As a result a bit late, Megan and I still headed out to the Halloween Parade. I guess we’ll just have to chalk it up to one of those bittersweet transitional moments. Halloween used to be a family ‘obsession’ <grin>. The last Halloween before 9/11 we hosted over 225 Trick or Treat visitors to our door. (Nothing has been the same since 9/11, but that’s another story.)


Considering this town only has a population of 9,000 the scale and participation of this Halloween Parade has always amazed us since moving her three years ago. Small town America will never cease to fascinate me.


  1. Even thought Patti wasn't able to join you I do hope you had a nice time and let go of some of your stress.

  2. I have a close friend diagnosed with MS and though she is in very early stages, she is becoming forgetful.  Is this common?

  3.     Whenever I need the perspective of Patti’s symptoms versus others with MS I tend to turn to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society information bases.  
        "COGNITIVE FUNCTION … About 50% of people with MS will develop some degree of cognitive dysfunction. In MS, this generally means slowed ability to think, reason, concentrate, or remember. But only 5-10% of persons with MS develop problems that are severe enough to interfere in a significant way with everyday activities. While cognitive dysfunction is more common among people who have had the disease for a long time, it can be seen early in the disease course-even as the first symptom. … "


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