ANDOVER, Conn. (WTNH) — The vows of marriage.
“It takes a deeper meaning now,” Lisa Marshall said.
To have and to hold.
“The hand that you’re holding on the front porch is not going to be there later, so do a lot of hand-holding,” Marshall said.
Marshall holds on tight to her great love, Peter.
“Peter and I have been married for 13 years,” she said.
For better, for worse.
“We were married maybe five years when I started noticing some signs of memory loss,” Marshall said.
In 2018, at the young age of 53, Peter was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s. He began deteriorating quickly. The disease robs him of who he truly is.
“The behavior that we are seeing is not the behavior of the person we love, and they are the behaviors of the disease.”
Peter had to retire early. Marshall had to also leave her career to become Peter’s full-time caregiver.
“It’s a lot of work, and it’s a very, very heavy work,” Marshall said.
For richer or for poorer.
“We went from having two very lucrative careers to just social security disability income,” Marshall said. “That’s difficult.”
But she says it’s ok to seek help.
“I’ve come up with the three A’s,” Marshall said. “Number one, accept help. Number two, you have to ask for help. Number three, you have to articulate what you need.”
Through it all, Marshall is helping those impacted by this terrible disease through her blog, “Oh Hello Alzheimer’s”
“It turned into something much greater than I ever thought it would be,” Marshall said. “Now there are 16,000 people who understand and can relate to what we are going through.”
In sickness and in health
To love and to cherish
Till death do us part.
“I want to come out of this on the day after and say ‘I have no regrets. I gave Peter a beautiful life,’ so my mantra is no regrets,” Marshall said.
View the “Oh Hello Alzheimer’s” blog at https://www.facebook.com/OhHelloAlzheimers/
The video below is from Nov. 3, 2021.