Mona Bugbee , 82, is a Mount Pleasant resident who currently lives at the Maplewood of Mount Pleasant Senior Assisted Living Home. She is suffering from Dementia, a disease caused by Alzheimer’s. She specifically experiences Sundowner’s, a form of the disease where an individual feels the symptoms of the disorder at the highest level during the night.

Mona has been living in Maplewood for five years now. Her daughter, who is named after Mona, and her other three siblings, decided the assisted living home would be the best place for their mother after her symptoms became very severe and she could no longer take care of herself.

Mona Jr. is the only child who regularly visits her mother. The others live outside the Mount Pleasant area and no longer obtain the same closeness and relationship with their mother. She comes and spends time with her mother as much as she can throughout the week, cleaning up her room, bringing her gifts and sometimes taking her outside to various places to get her away from the home for a little bit of time.

Mona Jr. says that she has accepted the fact that her mother is no longer the person she used to be. In fact, at times, her mother does not even remember that it is her very own daughter who comes to spend time with her. Mona Jr. says she feels she has taken on the motherly role in their relationship, something she has ease in doing since she has children of her own. She cherishes the moments they spend together and says it is her way of giving back to her mother after all of the years she was the one receiving all of the care and attention.

According to Mona Jr., Maplewood is a great place for her mother to spend her days. Mrs. Bugbee has been able to find friends in the residents and the faculty are all very caring and attentive. Mona Jr. says she wants her mother to be safe and looked after until the end of her life, and believes that the home is the best place that can offer this. Unlike her siblings, she wishes to be the best daughter she can be by continuously being there for her mother throughout her time and experience with the disorder. It is easy to see that although her mother may not always seem to know who she is, their love for one another remains and will stay strong until the very end.

Special thanks to the Monas and Maplewood Assisted Living of Mount Pleasant, Mich. for making this all possible.

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