meggen’s bad day ends with a light-bulb moment

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When Australian physiotherapist Meggen Lowry forgot her keys (car, house, and others) in the glove box of her partner’s car, she wasn’t bothered. She had a spare for her Subaru 4×4, and that’s all she really needed to drive herself to a full slate of appointments that summer day.

What she didn’t know when she left her flat was the battery in the spare key was dead. That meant she’d have to unlock and lock the vehicle doors manually as she made her way around town to visit her clients.

No problem. Or so she thought.

As it turned out, the forgotten keys, the spare key battery fail, certain design features of her vehicle, and other random circumstances conspired to create a day that went from good to bad to worse. And in the end, a short scribbled note she’d written in the margins of some paperwork five years earlier would prompt her to discover dementia learning amidst the disaster. Here’s the note:

I was charmed by Meggen’s recount of her adventure; I hope you will be too. More important, I appreciated her self-reflection and spot-on connection at the story’s conclusion.

I wonder if you’ll agree…? (Meggen starts telling her story at about 01:35 into the podcast below).

Meggen Lowry is the Principal physiotherapist at Next Step Physio in Brisbane, Australia. She is passionate about healthy ageing, and serves on her state’s gerontology board of the Australian Physiotherapy Association. Meggen champions movement as medicine for both the body and the brain.  She partners with aged and community care organisations to enhance access to both PREhabilitation and rehabilitation services for older adults, and promotes inclusion for those with cognitive impairment. Meggen developed Clock Yourself; an exercise program that combines brain games with physical exercise. See www.clockyourself.com.au for details.

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3 Comments

  1. Very good parallel example of the frustration which often causes anger. My mothers label is vascular dementia but I suspect mixed and so often it is too much effort to do anything or to ask for help. Maybe even shame or embarrassment that you can’t do it by yourself, I’m sure I would resent the loss of independence. Especially when the “expert” is the same generation as your grandchildren.

    • I’m totally with you Janelle,

      and labels aren’t of much use either, they cause more problemsand hamper the process of finding solutions 🙁

      thanks for subscribing and commenting,

  2. This is actually very illuminating. A perfect modern-tech example and relatively insignificant hassle which made this woman connect the dots between dementia and daily frustration. Her patient recounting of each step is what nails it. If my mother (and others with Alzheimer’s) experience this daily and day after day… imagine the frustration that builds up! I haven’t checked out the link yet, but thanks Susan.

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JM