What is Huntington's Disease you ask?
I still don't have a complete understanding, but I did find some useful images to share with you. Anytime someone asked me what HD was, I would say "It's like a combination of Parkinson's and Alzheimer's." I wasn't too far off.
Here's another graphic, that actually has a picture of what a normal brain looks like vs an HD affected brain:
My mother was diagnosed roughly 15 years ago. At the time of her official diagnoses, my parents were divorcing, my dad requested the sale of the home they had lived in for over 20 years, and my sister chose to go live with our dad. Also, I was pregnant with my second child and heading to Mexico for a 6mo visit. A lot was going on back then. I was told of her diagnoses, and the impending divorce and sale of the house, while I was in Mexico.
Over the past 15 years, I never really read up on the disease. All I knew was that my grandma Helen had it, and my mom had it, and there was a 50/50 chance my sister would get it.
I watched and dealt with all of the symptoms my mom experienced, and the repercussions of the symptoms. I found this graphic that explains the symptoms:
My mom showed every single physical sign, and almost every single mental and emotional sign of HD by the time she passed. Perhaps the one that was least noticeable to everyone except the caretakers she had for the last 3 year was self neglect. She had always dealt with insomnia, but it was questioned after the fact whether or not the insomnia and depression led to her self neglect on purpose. That would go along with the lack of motivation and memory loss, although her memory loss wasn't as bad as I hear it could get. I hate to think that she purposely caused herself to die prematurely. :(
At this time, there is tons of research going on, trying to find the cure. Sadly, there wasn't much that could help my mom live a longer more fruitful life.
One of the things she did while she still could, was knit and create hats, blankets, scarves, and other handmade items. She would sell them at craft fairs, and donate 100% of the money earned to HDSA research. I am slowly going through all the boxes and totes she packed everything in, and will be selling as much as I can. I have created a Facebook page to post pictures of the items I'm selling. The ones she specifically made for HDSA research will be sold in the same manner, with 100% of that money going to the local research chapter. Those items will be marked SPECIAL. You can find the page here: https://www.facebook.com/Grandmas-Handmade-Creations-930655380349298/timeline/
Huntington's Disease is not a pleasant disease. Truthfully, none are, but this one is the creme de la creme because there is NO CURE. For now, stem cell research has provided with a few breakthroughs on coming close to eliminating some of the symptoms, but that is all that has been happening.