By in Persona Paper

Welcome Isabella Di Fronzo!

Roughly five years ago my oldest daughter walked into the Black Watch armoury on Parc Avenue in Montreal for the first time. It's a massive, impressive place with huge reinforced doors and ramps that would allow a tank to be driven right out on the parade square. And as a friend has once described this sacred place, the banners bearing the names of the soldiers awarded the Victoria Cross “hold up the ceiling.”

My little girl had to work hard at being a cadet. Sometimes it was really challenging. But as a mother, I was reassured by the patience of the officers. And by the young women who were my daughter's senior cadets. One of them, a very sweet and diminutive girl who was the youngest of three sisters, mentored my daughter closely that first year.

And her mother was one of the first friendly faces I got to know in the Regimental Family.

Isabella Di Fronzo - Isabella here on Persona Paper – is a recent addition to our writing community, but I have been fortunate to meet her in the flesh and to make the acquaintance of her husband and five beautiful children. Her older son learned bagpipes alongside my middle daughter. Her younger son learned to drum alongside my oldest daughter. And Isabella and I would exchange chat and support when we would meet at the armoury on those chilly, grey Saturdays.

I am pleased to see that already since joining us, Isabella has begun to share her wonderful Italian recipes – and also some of the intimate moments of her life. In her post, “ What Alzheimer did to Maria... ” she speaks frankly of how her family learned that her mother had Alzheimer's Disease, and of how the disease stole Maria away from her family.

I look forward to much more interesting and touching posts from Isabella. And I'm sure she will charm you, just as she did me and my family! She is a solid woman with a strong spirit and a great love of life. I know she will make a strong contribution to our community.

Welcome Isabella!

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Image credit: Pipers and Highland dancers of the Black Watch cadets, to bring back dome memories! © Kyla Matton Osborne

Image Credit » Kyla Matton Osborne

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paperdaisyflower7 wrote on October 23, 2014, 2:00 AM

welcome to the family I can relate to her with an Alzheimer mother too

poddys wrote on October 23, 2014, 6:35 AM

Welcome Isabella. Alzheimer's and Dementia in general are rapidly becoming very significant issues these days aren't they. We have several family and friends who are going through this right now, so hard to deal with loved ones who keep losing or scrambling their marbles.

Ruby3881 wrote on October 23, 2014, 9:26 AM

Daisy, we haven't had Alzheimer's in the family, but I do relate as well. I spent several years caring for elderly war veterans, many of whom had been impacted by strokes that changed their personalities or by some form of dementia. It's a really tough thing, caring for someone who is lost or can no longer communicate.

Ruby3881 wrote on October 23, 2014, 9:29 AM

We've never really had to deal with a diagnosis of dementia, but we've faced a loss of mental functioning at the end of life with some of our relatives. It's a scary thing, watching someone fade away mentally. And the fact that they often deny the problem is really tough...

momathome wrote on October 23, 2014, 2:08 PM

Welcome to Isabella ! I hope you enjoy your new home at Persona Paper and we all look forward to learning more about you and your family!

Isabella wrote on October 23, 2014, 2:49 PM

OMG...i feel like a celebrity!!! Kyla, thank you for such a generous introduction! I'm really moved by your kindness, i'm so happy to have joined you and the Persona Paper community, thank you. I have only warm and fond memories of your family as well. I remember those days at the Black Watch, they were priceless. So many lessons and not only for the children, we learned a thing or two!!! Those wonderful memories will stay with us forever, not to mention the pictures and videos. Do you remember the Black Watch Idol?

Isabella wrote on October 23, 2014, 3:04 PM

The worst part, is that there's no medication for for this disease. They'll give you drugs, but it's only to curb violent behavior,to help you comply. They can give you a medication called ARICEPT, but it's not to cure you. Doctors all have different opinions, some say it slows down the disease, some say it serves no purpose. For very violent patients, morphine is the drug of choice, really slows down the patient, not a good idea in my opinion. It's sad, to watch someone fade away it's true.

Feisty56 wrote on October 23, 2014, 7:20 PM

Welcome Isabella! I would normally say that you have a lot to live up to here in Kyla's introduction to you, but since I've already read "What Alzheimer did to Maria, " I can see the wisdom in her words.

paperdaisyflower7 wrote on October 23, 2014, 9:50 PM

it's really hard especially if it is your mom

Ruby3881 wrote on October 23, 2014, 9:53 PM

I never saw anyone with Alzheimer's given morphine, though this is going back a couple of decades. The drug of choice back then, anyway, was an anti-psychotic called Haloperidol.

Ruby3881 wrote on October 24, 2014, 11:19 AM

I don't think we were around when they did the Black Watch Idol. I know your girls tried to get a talent show going one year, but there wasn't enough interest. What I was remembering just now was the time that Nancy asked if I wanted to shoot with the kids, and how you & I got a good chuckle talking about how the kids and the husbands could lie on the cold floor. We were happy sitting up, so we could sip our coffee and stay warm!

Ruby3881 wrote on October 24, 2014, 11:21 AM

With five kids and now a little grandbaby, there's lots for Isabella to share! :)

Ruby3881 wrote on October 24, 2014, 11:21 AM

She sure jumped right in with both feet, didn't she Deb? I can't wait to see what else Isabella has in store for us :)

momathome wrote on October 24, 2014, 12:23 PM

Ruby3881 I bet -- I can just imagine some of the stories she has! Maybe she will share with us some tips on how to survive the teenage years! lol.

Isabella wrote on October 24, 2014, 2:20 PM

Thank god for coffee!!! I got a many memories rushing back!

Isabella wrote on October 24, 2014, 2:24 PM

That's a very hot subject, it comes with a warning!!!

momathome wrote on October 24, 2014, 5:52 PM

Isabella Duck? lol. My daughter is already starting to act like one although she has a few years to go, I'm not sure if we are going to make it! lol.