"To have clarity or intelligibility...understandable" Coherent.
This morning when I went in to get mom ready for the morning, she was motioning at me and so I moved closer, turning. She fussed with the hem of my shirt which must have been "not perfect" according to her way of seeing things. I looked at her and chuckled and said thank you and continued on about the business at hand. I looked at her again, and the realization struck me, that at moments like these, mom is coherent, and that thought is almost horrific to me, considering the state of being she is in.
As dementia has progressed these last several years, it is easy to settle into the assumption that mom "is not there" most of the time. When I stop and think about all the possible times that a good part of her actually is present and coherent, I can't even fathom what it is like to her even in the minutest way, to be aware of some of the things that she must experience as I tend to her on a daily basis. I can see in her eyes when "she is there", or at least a good portion of her understanding is present.
Today, she did not like the fact that I was checking her to see if she needed to be changed, trying to clamp her legs tight, that is someone who has understanding and is trying to have a say in what is being done to her. I am in a whirlpool of emotions over this as I consider it all. But, I still have to do the things I do to care for her nonetheless.
As I sat down to write this, I also did some research looking for someone who may have addressed the topic. What I found were basically clinical and professional writings, nothing from a "just me at home" individual. So, this is just me, no special degrees or education in the area of caregiving for someone with dementia, learning as I go.