- [Announcer] Funding for "Unconditional" is provided by- - With nearly 6 million of our 38 million members currently or having previously served in the military, we're in a mission to support veterans and military families.
To learn more, visit aarp.org/veterans.
(pleasant piano music) - Whether you provide daily care, participate in decision making, or simply love a person living with Alzheimer's or another dementia, the Alzheimer's Association is here for you around the clock.
Resources and information are available at alz.org.
(dramatic and serene piano music) (serene piano music continues) (serene piano music continues) (serene piano music concludes) - [Richard] What's up there, fella?
See, I'm Richard, your son.
Let me put this amplifier on you.
Test, test, test.
How are you?
(Stephen mumbles) Yeah.
- You're so good.
(people chattering) How are you?
- You good?
(somber music) All right, here it goes.
Don't try to eat it now.
Not bad, huh?
(somber music) You like this, don't you?
I know you like this.
(soft piano music) That's it, kiddo.
Caring for dad is a challenge of physical and mental health.
It was a lonely road until I found others.
- Do you have nightmares?
(soft piano music) - Tell us about the injury.
- [Luke] My mind was a mess.
We get lost in there.
- With cancer, that's dangerous.
- We're everywhere.
- I wish I could be there for all of it.
- I'm not ready.
- Me and Matthew.
- Join energy.
- (laughs) Have fun!
- Fall deeper in love.
This is a common experience.
(soft piano music) (car engines rumbling) - Okay, you're almost there.
We have to.
No, you have to throw your gum first.
Throw your gum.
- [Carer] Okay.
Okay, brush your teeth now.
- Thank you.
- [Carer] All right, okay.
Okay, go again and then close this.
Use this one.
- (laughs) Thank you.
You're so good.
My first son, Richard.
(laughs) - You have to go walking now.
- Thank you, sir.
- Move forward, one.
- Oh, yeah.
- Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight.
- The father I've known- - Eight, seven.
- has been disappearing.
(electronic bubbling) - Mouses.
(computer dings) - Still my dad, but our relationship is definitely changing.
(electronic bubbling) - Babble.
- At age 15 when we were living on Jackson Street.
- Oh yeah.
- And went to (indistinct).
And then, I was baptized there.
It was the greatest blessing throughout my whole life.
- There it is.
It's a beautiful one.
- Little by little, Alzheimer's, it's basically just taking away little bits of his brain.
- All right.
And maybe a little bit of me too.
(group chattering) Here we are at dinner with my aunts and uncles about eight years ago.
And you can see him, he seems totally fine.
But the youngest of his 12 siblings pulls me aside and says, "He's forgetting our names."
And not too much later, he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and that started the road.
- We'll get your mother.
- Well, she's gonna wait for us here 'cause we're coming back.
(soft music) When I saw you.
You're a big, big joy to me, Richard!
- Good to see you too.
- I love you so much!
- I love you too.
(soft piano music) It's okay.
- You don't want gum.
- He was mid stage at that point.
I think we get off here.
We get off here.
- All right.
- My mom, it was taking care of an 84-year-old child 24 hours a day.
She needed my help because he kept wanting to leave and open doors and wander in the streets.
- That's fresh tuna fish?
- Keep on eating Subway sandwiches or going and buying donuts.
- Which one?
There's so many before.
- He drove straight through, all the way through that back wall.
You know, he liked to poop everywhere.
I clean up his poop and he had the strength to open up drawers and turn on stoves and try to open cans with a fork.
Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom.
And he did it.
(soft piano music) (people chattering) Hi, I'm Richard Lui, live at MSNBC headquarters here in New York City.
Thanks for being with us today.
We just have some new information on the breaking news story.
The mass shooting come out of El Paso, Texas.
I've been a journalist for 15 years.
We're gonna continue next with Reverend Al Sharpton and "Politics Nation."
We'll be right back.
The last second there, Ron.
Did you see that?
- I see.
- Oh, I tell ya.
Being an anchor, you normally work eight days a week, 25 hours a day.
- Get out of here before it's too late.
- I don't know, man.
You know how it goes.
I'm not going anywhere.
- I went to my bosses and I said, "You know, my dad just got diagnosed and I know where this is going."
She and I came up with a plan so that I could work part time.
So I work from Friday to Sunday and then Monday I get up, to the airport, fly from New York to San Francisco.
It's a 10-hour door to door.
Immediately go to care for my dad.
- Thank you, sir.
- Fridays, I get up and I reverse the entire trip and that's three times a month, about 300,000 miles a year.
January 20th, we're taking a quick little walk.
Say hello to baba.
You're so good, I told you.
Ah, you're so good, son.
(soft piano music) - When I wasn't looking after my dad, I was learning from others what it meant to be a caregiver.
- It's critical to document the caregiver journey.
To convey the impact on their physical, psychological, financial, and social wellbeing.
- Now it's three phases.
- And we start with becoming aware and adjusting.
- Yeah, which is the most difficult thing.
- It was probably three or four years before I began to self-identify as a caregiver even though I was providing those- - Did you say three or four years?
- Three or four years.
- The future we once planned it's impossible now.
- So we're trying to build a new one that's just as good, maybe better.
It's just hard coming to grips with the different part.
- They felt like they were on the same lonely road that I thought I was on.
- You don't take yourself.
- I'm a caregiver for my husband who's a- - [Richard] Until we realized we're everywhere.
My children are or were ready to be caregivers.
- Wow, all no.
- Everybody is battling- - That's when I found Amy Bushatz.
She's also a journalist and her beat was caregiving stories.
She was also living through it herself.
- Letting my local community understand about caregivers and that's not something that we do.
The longer that I spend in my community in Alaska, the more I see that's true.
But the more they get to know me and they understand why this is important and so they get to know Luke, right?
And they get to see this is who he is and this is what we deal with at home and this is maybe the part that you don't see everyday.
- [Richard] Right.
And so, I headed to Alaska to see what Amy and Luke were living through at home.
(soft music) (soft music continues) - No, it's sad that ... Close enough.
Okay, good stuff.
Hey, Steve, I am hunting down some information about the Childcare Aware contract, which is, of course, the ones that gives the subsidy if childcare on base is full.
When I married a guy in the military, my local news became military spouse and family issues.
I've been covering military spouse and family news about eight years now.
Sailors and their families more money.
(Luke speaks indistinctly) I'm making them some breakfast.
You wanna do lunches?
It's not super cold, so you could probably wear short sleeves with a sweatshirt if you want.
It's like 34.
It's warm (laughs).
- Dave, eggs, table.
- Thank you, sir.
- Hucky, sit down, honey.
- You guys want some carrots?
- Not at all.
- [Luke] Not at all?
All right, well, you have to have some carrots, okay?
Dave, do you want yogurt?
- [Luke] Thank you, sir.
- Luke got out of the military on July 1, 2016.
And as far as I was concerned, okay, he had some struggles, but he's not disabled.
- Let's go, big guy.
We know he struggles with PTSD.
We think he probably bonked his head a couple times.
His neck hurts.
Sometimes, he has headaches.
Not a big deal, okay?
So then, one day, at least in our house, you wake up and there's this huge sum of money in your bank account from the VA. - Hmm?
Can I see the list?
- Holy mother.
- 'Cause he has, at this point, gone through the process to be rated, you know, what are your "disabilities"?
- And it's just like this laundry list, page after page after page.
Mild traumatic brain injury, percentage, description, cardiac disease, percentage, description.
And we discovered that the VA actually considers him not 100% disabled, more like 350% disabled.
- Dave got that yesterday from school.
- [Luke] Yeah, he got it yesterday.
Is the only library book?
- And I found that really sad.
I felt like I was now dealing with somebody who was proclaimed broken and I didn't know really how to process that and what to think about that.
Do you want a hat?
- Thank you.
Get your backpack.
Please go to school.
I love you.
I hope you have a great day.
(somber music) - Yeah!
(somber music) - Wow, that must've been tough.
So, Luke, tell us about the injury.
- I sustained my real bad TBIs, traumatic brain injury, a decade ago, 2009.
A big one would be my vehicle rolling over an IED and blowing up.
Most IEDs go up around a vehicle and they're literally crushed by a shockwave inside of it.
I was in a vehicle where I was crushed to the point that there were armored doors that blew off the vehicle and released the pressure.
If they hadn't have been there, I would not be sitting here today to talk to you.
I would've been turned into internal Jell-O.
(bombs blast) (high-pitched whirring) But brain slams up against your skull and it is damaged, bruised, and needs time to recover.
I probably should've went and laid down for 10 days in a dark tent, but I took some aspirin, went and threw up in my room, and went back to work the next day.
(high-pitched whirring) (objects clattering) (objects clattering) (somber music) I find healing in the mountains for myself mentally, emotionally, even physically.
After 10 years on active duty, of 10 years of war, we moved here knowing that it was going to help me heal and, therefore, or family to heal, to grow, to be better.
- We needed a fresh start.
We needed to start over.
- Six, one.
- When we moved here in 2016 and he was home all the time that's when I really started noticing the forgetfulness.
- [Luke] One non-locking carabineer.
One non-locking carabineer.
- Multiple times, he would set his bag of PT stuff on the back of his car and drive away.
Just a lot of stuff right and left.
Like, where is it?
Did you leave the stove on, you know?
Just spacing out.
He let our kids out for a walk and forgot they were gone.
State trooper brought them back.
It was very embarrassing.
- Probe, two sets.
Ski straps, ski straps, ski straps.
10 meters, one each.
Sometimes, you're husband forgets things.
My wife takes it for granted that I will forget things and is pleasantly surprised when I don't.
Okay, brother, the reason I'm calling is I have a lot of redundant gear for the climb up Hood.
I think that covers a lot of the stuff you're gonna need outside of clothing other than a harness and a helmet.
I think you should get your own helmet and your own- - Okay.
The only thing I recommend is you need to pick up your own harness and you need to pick up your own helmet.
- Okay, okay.
- So things that would be normal for other people, they don't think that way.
It's almost as if going from A to Z, I will go A, B, M, C, Q, Z.
(soft music) - It's very tempting to be angry at him.
I taught myself to stop and recalibrate.
We are angry at the brain injury, we are not angry at Luke.
Now, I would love to be able to tell you that when he's being weird or crazy I think, "Oh, he must be having a headache," and, oh, "Life's so hard for you."
Like, let's be really understanding.
That is not (laughs) at all what happens, inevitably, right?
I say, "You are acting like a psycho," so (laughs) ... - [Luke] (indistinct) that's good, Amy.
- No, it's not good at all.
Living with someone with a brain injury is very stressful.
(soft music) - How do I deal with that?
- How do you deal with that?
- Well, I mean, I see a therapist, so (laughs) ... (soft music) - We register isolation, discord, alienation, in the exact same way that we register a physical threat.
Over time, that can become difficulty with complicated thinking, communicating with other people, even displaying empathy.
So in that way, our isolation can become self perpetuating.
- I happened to meet Kate when she was an expert on my show.
Joining me now is Kate Hendricks Thomas, a former Marine and board member of the Service Women's Action Network.
She was the leading voice in the world of Veteran wellness.
Kate, when you were serving, were you aware of this?
- Well, the scale and the reach of the current issue is certainly larger than anything I faced while I was on active duty.
'Cause when I was an officer of Marines- - Thinking back, I felt like the questions I needed to ask myself now emotionally were something she knew well.
So I reached out to visit Kate.
(soft music) (soft music continues) - I'm gonna try something different for dinner tonight.
- Oh, no.
- So wish me luck.
- Please don't.
- Hey, I'm trying to do something that Matthew will eat.
That's my goal.
Hello, honey bunny.
- Mama, can I eat something?
- I'm gonna make dinner right now.
Take your shoes off.
You don't need shoes on in the house.
You're gonna try my meatballs.
- Mama, I want waffles.
- You can have waffles after meatballs.
- I want the waffles and toast.
- You can have toast and meatballs.
- [Shane] I mean, you gotta have protein, dude.
- [Kate] Go sit at your spot and wait.
- [Shane] We first met when were at Tuscaloosa.
She was going for her PhD.
I had just gotten back from Iraq and I was finishing up my master's degree.
- [Kate] He was just a steady person of character and integrity and loyalty.
- In 2014, we got married.
And Matthew was born that same year.
And it has been a whirlwind ever since.
- And about four weeks after he was born we moved to South Carolina so I could start my first job as a professor.
- [Shane] She has written three books.
She has done three TED Talks.
- We make up about seven percent of the population.
As long as I strove to be perfect, as long as I never used ramps on the obstacle course, I could be part of the club and I love that club.
I focus, a lot of the time, on trying to make the transition back to civilian life easier for military women.
- [Shane] Her mission in life was trying to cater to people who were clearly in need.
But I have to balance her out.
She would constantly say, "Yes, and ..." but overexerted herself one too many times.
- You have something called innate resilience.
- [Shane] And I can't always be there to be her guardrail.
- It's actually not bad, right?
You're pleading the fifth?
(laughs) - I'll let the middle of the night tell me whether or not- - [Kate] It's not bad.
You're not gonna get food poisoned.
- No way.
- You're right.
- That's right.
- [Kate] Good?
- Matthew teaches me well.
(soft music) (siren wails) (monitor beeping) (people chattering) - Why can't I get a recliner?
Husband chairs aren't made to be comfortable.
- Except in the mall.
- Then they are designed to be comfortable 'cause a happy husband means a happy wife.
Well I appreciate you being here.
It's so hard to sit still for this whole thing.
- The oncologist said that it looked like somebody had taken Kate and dipped her from head to toe, every bone in her body.
She said, "We're looking at about six to 10 years."
And my initial response was, "You mean six to 10 years for the treatment to finally take effect or what do you mean?"
And she didn't answer.
I realized that that was how long Kate's gonna be on this planet.
Cancer attacks the person and it only has one mission.
And you don't know when it's gonna complete that mission.
(bird squawks) - Chemotherapy is expensive.
- Just a little bit.
- We need to keep this for kindling.
- In this house, we say the word cancer, cancer, with a little lilt in our voice because we don't want to scare Matthew.
He doesn't really get yet that we're talking about it just being him and daddy at some point.
We haven't really gone there yet.
- If you want.
(somber music) - He knows that my natural tendency is to move fast.
You know, the phrase I always use is power through.
You've gotta power through some hard things and with cancer that's kinda dangerous.
(laughs) Now we're gonna get up, right?
Now we're up.
Now we feel good.
I don't wanna lose my image of myself as somebody that takes care of other people.
Like, that's always been such a big part of my identity that the idea of slowing down and letting other people do for me feels like losing myself.
(soft music) - One time, me and Matthew were down here and playing or doing something and she was standing on those stairs and had tears streaming down her face.
And said that it felt like every bone in her body was writhing and pinging in pain and Matthew's standing right there with me and looking up at her.
And you can't do anything, I mean ... (soft music) (car engines rumbling) (soft music continues) - I'm going to an intake appoint with the TBI clinic to do what's called a round table consult with a bunch of doctors and the TBI clinic.
This is my second round table, my first up here.
I bring her along to fill in the gaps.
- Well, so this is actually my first time doing one of these.
- But it's putting you together doing this.
And you're going in a very difficult environment.
- Yeah, I'm sort of hoping to have a chance to just weight, like counterbalance.
That's really like a major part of the caregiver thing, right?
- That he has a perception of his injuries and he has a perception of how he deals with stuff and then I have a totally different perception.
For example, we did an intake appointment once with a doctor who asked him like, "Do you have nightmares?"
Or, "Do you have flashbacks?"
And he said, "No."
And I said, "Oh, I'm really sorry, but, yes, you do."
- There might be things that you need to discuss that you haven't discussed and those get missed and that hurts.
But at the same time, it's also a place where potentially your spouse, your caregiver, can learn more about where you're hurting and how they can help.
- [Richard] Could she say something that might hurt you?
- Yes, but I could also say something that could hurt her, you know?
- It's hard to look in the face of your trauma.
The hardest thing is watching the emotional toll.
I can't fix that.
I can't influence that at all.
I can put him in front of resources, I can go with him to appointments.
I can, you know, remember to make the phone call that he can't remember to make, put it on his calendar so he can do it.
I cannot control how he feels about stuff.
- 2012 was when, like, we realized there was a big problem.
Honestly, our marriage fell apart.
I was completely giving my life to my career and service to the Army.
And it wasn't until 2015 that I made the decision to leave active duty.
So there was like a three-year period there just pain.
I'm gonna get Dave.
You mean Huck.
I'm gonna go get Huck.
If I can find my wallet.
Getting Huck, getting Huck.
(car engine rumbling) So my perspective, driving is a little different than other people.
What I look at is, all right, I'm coming in to a turn and I know that this turn cuts and then turns left.
This is a perfect setup for an L ambush.
So if I wanted to, I would put a bomb right around the corner and then one right in here.
I'd take out the front and lead vehicle and then I would just kill everything in between.
- [Richard] So do you still think that way?
Or also all the time.
Everything can be a threat.
Every scrap of trash, every misplaced tree landing.
The further away you are from combat, the easier it is to disassociate yourself from those threats until you're triggered.
(alarm rings) When I came back from deployment, I started using substances to dull the pain, over-the-counter medications, alcohol.
Yeah, you could tell my heart rate was going up.
I worked crazy, insane hours, had constant alertness, watchfulness, inability to sleep.
We were about to redeploy to Afghanistan, but I'd go for a run and I literally got, like, a quarter mile down the road and I had this massive pain in my left side and I, like, fall into the bushes and just lay there.
I had 90% blockage in two arteries.
They were like, "We're doing emergency surgery on you tomorrow morning."
The cardiologist was like, "I don't know how you're alive."
(heartbeat thumping) Your job is killing you.
I was 29 years old.
After that, like, I literally spiraled out of control.
My mind was a mess.
I can do my job, great.
That world I get.
You want me to go home and be emotionally available to my wife and kids?
The chaos of my home, the chaos that I created, I didn't understand.
- Can you sit?
In the (indistinct) Huck a buck.
- Our dad is a proud guy, but a lot of stuff goes on with him.
- He went to war when Davey- - He went to war when Davey was one.
- got a endless headache.
- David, he went to war when David was one.
- A war that's still going on.
He protects our country.
The whole thing.
- He also protected the whole West.
- Yes, that is true.
- [Huck] Well, a bomb went off on his vehicle.
He was blown up and it hit his head.
- How do you talk about that with mom and dad?
- We just barely.
- We don't talk about it really at all.
- I come down, I see him putting his hands over his head and I leave him alone.
- Some mornings, his headache is big.
Some morning it's small.
- Sometimes, he wakes up crying.
- There we go.
- [Luke] David, a lot of times, will be, like, very consciously trying to be quiet or a lot of days it'll be a migraine.
But a lot of days it'll be like, because I have this low end headache, I'm, like, super irritable.
He's the one that will be, like, visibly upset.
- I just like sense it.
(soft music) His face doesn't look normal.
- All right.
- I see my dad and I get that weird feeling that he's feeling pretty bad.
- So hold at engine start.
(drone whirs) - Just like you're doing.
You wanna keep it near us.
Oh, too much, too much, too much!
Too many movements.
- Very small movements.
- Got it?
- I need to get better at this.
We'll practice some more.
- If you think about somebody in terms of PTSD or TBI and if you're emotional capacity is as cup and you're operating at almost full at the time.
And you wake up in the morning and now today you have a migraine, so now you are full.
And it disintegrates, right?
It's just all falls apart.
- Hey, Dave, put this away, please.
I've asked you.
This is the third time I've asked you to do it.
Kid rolls his eyes and it, boom, that's it.
(dramatic music) And we explode.
(glass shatters) Anger and frustration and rage at times.
And they're kids.
(kids laughing) (glass shattering) - What I really want in those moments is for him to just go away.
Like, retreat, retreat, you know?
Like, if you need to cool off, go downstairs.
But that takes him admitting, like, "I'm having a problem right now, I need to go," and that's hard.
(soft music) - At one point, Amy had been, like, "Listen, you gotta go."
Like, "You're out of control.
Your substance abuse is out of control.
Your behavior is unacceptable the way you're treating me and the children."
It was kinda like make or break.
(Amy grunts) - He was imploding so much and full of so much self loathing that he was willing to throw away whatever.
- Go, Amy.
(soft music) (Amy grunts) - And then, comes this terrible, terrible moment where I'm standing in my bedroom looking at my husband who is literally sitting on the floor crying saying that he doesn't know why he's here, doesn't know why he's alive.
(somber music) - [Luke] In early 2014, I was really broken emotionally.
I was having suicidal ideations.
I was making a plan how to kill myself.
When you're in your own mind, we get lost in there.
It was the darkest moments in my life.
(soft piano music) (passengers chattering) (car engines rumbling) (soft piano music) - You want it?
No, you can't do that.
You left too much on.
- (laughs) Okay.
I can't see.
- After the emotional toll of caring for my father at home reached a breaking point, we made that tough decision to move my father into an assisted care facility.
It was better for everybody, but it's tough.
My sister really wanted him to be at home.
I did too, but I knew it was tearing my mom up.
She couldn't keep up.
When we left or when we weren't here, it was all her.
- My mom slept on the couch every night so that if my dad got lost or opened the door to try and leave she was there.
Mom never complained.
She never said anything.
She just did it.
But she never slept in the bed again.
- [Rose] He likes this though.
(Richard chuckles) - [Richard] He's got that itch going on there.
- Well, okay, let's see what ... (Stephen groans) Okay, you're gonna exercise your fingers then, okay?
Up, one, two.
(Stephen groans) Three.
You wanna sing?
- [Richard] Yeah, "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star."
Here, use this- - You sing it.
- I'll do one little piggy.
- No, you- - One little ... - [Richard] That's your specialty, mom.
♪ Twinkle, twinkle little star ♪ How I wonder what you are ♪ Up above the world - So now, he's at a different stage, which means the challenges have shifted.
♪ Like a diamond in the sky - He can't walk.
None of those things that existed before are happening.
♪ How I wonder (Stephen groans) Oh, that's enough.
- You really cranky, Baba?
(Stephen groans) Okay, it's 'cause you had a little water.
Alzheimer's took away the ability for my dad to swallow.
He basically forgot how to do it.
The food would go into his lungs, which would cause not only coughing, but potentially deadly pneumonia.
Come on over here.
So this one is French toast, this is eggs.
For the food, I use the white spoon.
My dad's doctors had brought up putting in a stomach tube, but they also told us it's invasive and rarely successful and actually advised against it.
And we'll just wait for this little thing to show him to swallow.
You can do it.
We put together this very intricate, elaborate system of spoon feeding at the first facility he went to.
I'll use the large black spoon for the cream of wheat 'cause it can hold more.
But it wasn't working.
My father's lowest weight was in the 90s.
The very idea of him having a stomach tube and getting fed with a formula, that was after great debate in my family about what was best for him.
- I love you.
- You're so wonderful.
- One time, in the hospital, the doctor sat down my mom and me and he said, "We cannot feed your dad.
Your dad keeps regurgitating.
You need to think about letting him go, like now."
- Hang in there, baba.
I mean, we know this one patient so well.
Sometimes, we had to fight what the advice was.
We ended up putting in the tube.
Going for a ride.
(Rose laughs) And it is what has been able to keep him with us.
All right, be careful of his fingers, mom.
All right, fella.
- No, no, that's too loose.
It'll come right off.
- [Rose] I just want it- - Just don't make it too tight.
- I'm not.
Are you gonna plan to read to him or not?
- Oh, chapter eight, right?
Jesus went to the Mount of Olives at dawn.
He appeared again in the temple courts.
(Stephen mumbles) Yes.
- (indistinct) verse?
- You remember this one?
My father wanted to become a youth pastor, but it just wasn't enough to support the family.
So he became a social worker and my mom an elementary school teacher in some of the most difficult schools.
They did not pick well-paying jobs.
It was a sacrifice.
We were on food stamps.
But it's the way they wanted to do it.
It's been super instructive for me this quiet lesson, right?
You need to live the way you want others to live.
You dig it?
Hey, Pastor Lui.
(Rose laughs) Doing good.
- He's giving you that kind of questioning look?
- You're wondering what I'm reading, don't you?
We're done bugging ya.
Ooh, wee, wee, oop.
He told me I looked good earlier.
- You look good?
He's obviously lost his sight too.
(Rose laughs) Right?
(soft music) So, Mom, I don't know what you do with, I bought 'em only because they look good.
How do you cook these?
You cook the beet like a potato.
- I thought this, this is the part you throw away, isn't it?
- I got cabbage too and I'm thinking just put it on all one pot.
(violin music) She took up lessons at the age of 79 to learn how to play the violin.
She loves music and it was her therapy.
She stopped for two years because the caregiving became so intense.
That meant a lot for her.
- That's all I could do.
- [Richard] That sounded good though.
- If I should ever learn it back.
- So about six months ago, she started her lessons again and it has brought her renewed joy and energy.
Unfortunately, spouses of those who have severe disease or afflictions may past first because they give so much.
So I knew that I had to watch my mom even though she did not wanna be watched.
(violin music) Bravo.
(cellphone rings) - On the money, we have enough for how long?
Another month or so?
- About a month to six weeks maybe.
- The care home costs $10,000 a month, which has depleted my mom's savings.
- When I start adding it up it was like it goes fast.
- But we know it's at least will take to get to refinance another five to six months, until that, so there's a gap of like four months in there.
All the kids don't agree on all the solutions on finances.
- Well, yeah, that's true in any family.
In the back of my mind, I was worried if we could handle another major turn financially and emotionally.
- My dad's disease was testing both his strength and ours.
(soft music) (soft music continues) - If these scans did show progression, would we be moving to clinical trials or- - We'd look to see what are available and what looks good.
There's one that I- - There's nothing you can do to go into remission so you're throwing treatment at it.
When it stops working you throw a different treatment at it.
And there's no getting off treatment at any point.
You go as long as your body can hold up.
(helicopter blades whirring) I spent 2005 in Fallujah.
I was so young at the time that I felt invincible and never thought much of the fact that Fallujah had a large burn pit.
There was black smoke all over the place all the time.
And water bottles that they would bring in they would leave them on pallets in the sun so the BPA could leach into the water and we would drink that.
Now we know such things can cause cancer.
When we talk about hidden wounds, we're often talking about mental health conditions or brain injuries.
But maybe you leave with an exposure that's gonna cause an autoimmune disorder down the road.
My original doctor strongly believed that it was an exposure-related cancer.
It was so aggressive and it was rare and I had no genetic markers, so it was weird that I had it.
I actually submitted a claim asking them to consider that a service-related condition because Matthew and Shane would get survivor's benefits after I die.
But that claim got denied, the appeal got denied.
The only other woman I was stationed with in Iraq has the exact same type of rare and aggressive breast cancer so, to me, it makes sense.
I feel like I know where it came from.
(fire crackling) - And your husband's doing okay?
- He had a little freakout recently.
He is really worried about finances and logistics in the after.
You know, because going from dual income to one income makes all that hard.
But he's managing and doing well.
- I can't get him to go to counseling though.
- I was just gonna ask.
- Yeah, I've sent him once.
- [Doctor] (indistinct) has excellent options.
- I've sent him once and he came back with pamphlets for me instead of a counseling session for him.
Yeah, but I'm working on it.
(soft music) - We got a switch upgrade at the same time as this for c1Secure and C1.Web.
I do IT project management for the government.
I wish there was a way for me to be paid what I'm being paid right now and just stay home.
I'm not ready financially to be able to take over for this.
Everything was structured where basically Kate was the primary breadwinner and I was secondary.
We have rocking chairs because we always talked about growing old and being able to see our kids and our grandkids being able to play out in the front law after a knockout career.
I'm not ready.
I'm not ready to be a single parent.
I don't know where to go from that point in time.
We have chemo Thursday, chemo Thursday, and then I'm supposed to be in Richmond to work on the book.
I'll go straight to Virginia Cancer Specialist to do my labs and then come home, hopefully, in time to pick up Matthew.
- We need to make sure that this date in particular you've got some kind of rest 'cause this is a lot.
- But then, we move into February and stuff slows down.
- That looks like an empty calendar.
- Yeah, we've got- - Are you okay?
Are you gonna live?
You have an empty calendar for February and it's already in January.
- We have basketball.
- We have Matthew's basketball.
- I have to apply for Matthew's benefits.
We gotta get that squared away.
We've gotta have the meeting with mom and dad about the wills and the powers of attorney.
- And then, the next day is crazy.
It's gonna be absolutely nuts.
That night I've gotta go do the brain MRI and I need somebody to drive me to that.
- So whoever.
- The brain MRI is for?
That's new to me.
Oh, maybe I didn't tell you about it.
Sorry, yeah, they're doing a brain MRI.
- Just to check.
I haven't had one in two years.
I'm sorry, I forgot to tell you about that.
- It's okay.
- Not really a big deal.
I definitely downplay things with Shane because he gets extremely worried and extremely scared.
There was a night where we thought the cancer had spread to my liver.
We were scared.
And I walked into my bedroom and I saw him on his knees, on the floor crying and it just it was like a punch to the stomach.
Even as we struggled with new jobs and we struggled with each other, you couldn't have paid me to see that there was a problem.
And you could never have paid me to ask for help.
(bird squawks) You're gonna play at Shawn and Hadley's and then you're gonna go play at Max and Lexi's.
Does that sound fun?
- Kate moving to another state next door to her brother for help, me traveling across the country.
Distance was not gonna stop us and we showed that.
(both laughing) Is Matthew good to play for a couple hours?
- Of course.
- Thank you, Lynn.
I'll see you later today.
We'll be here.
- All right.
- All right.
- She doesn't want to show that she's in pain, so a lot of times we don't know.
Everything's good, everything's fine.
And she's always been the leader of our family.
You just try to take the front from her.
Just kinda give her that feeling that she doesn't have to ask for help.
We're just there for her.
- Okay, happy birthday.
- Hi, happy birthday.
- Happy birthday, Shane.
(group chattering) - Oh, no.
- Oh, no.
- Too many coats.
- Look what you did, Joe.
- Look at what she's- - All right, so it's always me.
- No, we're doing it.
- It was my coat that broke it.
♪ Happy birthday dear Shane ♪ Happy birthday to you - [Group] Yay!
- In Charleston, we basically knew no one here.
(family chattering) They didn't miss a beat.
Every single body in this neighborhood ended up embracing us and accepting us.
(children chattering) - It is about Kate, but it's also about Shane.
He needs support too.
We just have to remember that's going through his own journey with this as well.
(children chattering) - Wait, what?
Show me that.
(children chattering) - I'm watching you.
- Nobody wants to think about what your kid's life will be like without you, so I think it's really important for us to let her know we're gonna be here.
We're not going anywhere.
We're gonna carry on and do what you would do.
- We need the village.
Right now we have the village.
(group chattering) - One, two, three.
I had fun.
- You're too heavy.
- I want Matthew to have everything.
- Two, three.
I want him to have a beautiful childhood, a stable childhood.
(Kate speaks indistinctly) Hey, Jack.
- I wish I could be there for all of it.
(person speaks indistinctly) It was like I was ...
I don't know when he's gonna lose his mom and I just, I hope it's at an age where he understands that I'm not leaving him.
I love him and I will always watch over him.
He's my world.
Those boys are my world.
And I would do anything for them.
And so, to be letting them down like this is so hard.
- There they are.
- There's Max and Matthew.
Looked, but he won't wave.
You know me.
You know me.
- Max is smiling.
- I just hope he knows that I loved him with everything I had and I will do whatever it takes to stay with him as long as I can.
(country music) - I think mom wants a cookie.
- Mom does want a cookie very badly.
- [Dave] Dad wants ... ♪ I'm won't rise above the (indistinct) ♪ ♪ I wanna be ready ♪ Not blind or afraid - See how he looks really wet right now?
But he's gonna dry off and then he's gonna be fluffy, but he'll get there.
- [Amy] Well, his precious little heart.
- Come here, Smaug.
These are Angus.
And produce a lot of meat.
- And milk?
- See this girl down here?
That's a Guernsey.
She produces between two and four gallons a day.
- Here at the last state fair- - Do people pass out on me?
- Maybe, but not us.
We'll be fine.
- Have fun.
All the way up!
- [Luke] Whoo!
(Dave screams indistinctly) - All right, buddy.
(Luke and Dave scream) Let me look in here.
Are there any sunglasses in there?
These are the big old ones.
(car engines rumbling) - [Dave] How exactly did a bomb make you have posttraumatic stressed?
- [Luke] It wasn't really the bomb that made me have posttraumatic stress, buddy.
It was all the guys I had to bury.
- I had a lot of soldiers die under my command, buddy.
- And it was so ... - And it's hard knowing that- - It's so hard on you that- - [Luke] decisions you made maybe caused guys to die.
- [Dave] It was so hard on you that it gave you posttraumatic stress?
- [Luke] That and continued exposure to combat over and for many, many, many days on end.
I had explored my trauma- - Is that it?
- [Luke] pretty intensely already.
Like, the events of trauma that I've had.
But what I hadn't explored was the moral injury that I continue to feel as an officer.
That burden that I have to carry.
I'm 10 years removed from combat and there's not a week that goes by that I'm not back in that desert and a gun fight in my nightmares to my dreams.
(soft music) We were in a sector of Afghanistan in the summer of 2009 that was the most deadly place on Earth to be.
And we started to address, all right, we have a Cholera outbreak in these villages.
We were gonna out and inoculate a bunch of people.
I was staying back 'cause my job as the executor officer is to run logistics.
On their way back from this village, my company commander's vehicle was blown up.
He was killed, his driver was killed.
The battalion physician assistant was killed.
The battalion senior medical NCOIC was killed.
And that just spurred a cycle of we went hunting for a week and a half.
(helicopter blades whir) My battalion was pretty much in continuous combat operations.
We were fighting our way through, so ... - Time to grieve?
- 'Cause you take the grief and you just buried it.
And you replaced it with anger, you replaced it with rage.
- [Richard] Do you know that he's feeling this shame?
- I mean, not at the time.
- How do you deal with that?
- No, I wouldn't have ever identified that before now.
(dog yelps) I think he was very careful about not sharing or burdening me, he would probably say, with his combat experience and the things that happened.
I found a picture the other day of a knife and it's inscribed.
So I asked him like, "What is this?"
"Oh, well, I was gonna give that to my interpreter."
Oh, okay, well why didn't you?
"Oh, well, he was killed."
I had no idea, right?
No idea that that had even happened.
How can I help him if I don't know?
On the flip side, that's not my job to carry that.
Come on, dogs.
- This is a bad week for me just because the dates.
- How many people come back from deployment and they're 19, 20 years old?
I was a couple years out of college.
With perspective, I now look back at that and realize that compassion, empathy, love, grief, those were things that I needed to express and share with other soldiers, but those were things that I didn't.
(Luke sings indistinctly) Oh, how our hearts beat high with joy whenever we hear that glorious word.
- His sacred space is combat issues or the trauma that happened at deployment.
My sacred space is having attended these memorial services back home and sit four rows behind the widow.
I mean, that changed me.
I had a little baby, you know?
Luke 2.0 who was at risk of not having a dad come home.
I didn't wanna know how close I was to being the person who got the knock on the door.
(soft music) (thunderous blasts) Darling, I am really behind in correspondence.
I'll make more of an effort, I promise.
You know whenever I miss you, I get out your love letters to me and read them.
I can hear your voice when I do and it makes me feel that you are right here next to me.
Finally, my mind, I will forever have the images that are seared there.
I will forever see Graham happy and quiet.
The last person to look at him alive.
I will forever remember what seemed like an eternity to get his body armor off, the weight of his body, as I carried him to the top of the Stryker where I gave him CPR till I was exhausted and unable to go and the feeling that I had of taking a pulse and not getting a heartbeat.
He is light in my life, if only for a short time, but a light nonetheless.
That is what all soldiers are.
A light that shines and then goes out.
So I'm shining for a long time.
Others, only for moments.
I prayed that the light of my life would not be my own.
I love you, darling.
(birds chirping) I remember getting that email and being like, "I don't wanna know this.
Why are you telling me this?
I would say where I am today, you know can't speak for tomorrow (laughs) where I am today is that I am okay knowing what I know and I don't need to know any more, nor do I regret knowing what I know.
(waves crashing) - As journalists, it's in our muscle set to digest events quickly, to understand the emotions behind the story, and then get it out in a way that helps people.
And I think as a caregiver, that has helped me to move down the road faster.
Dive in, figure out what needs to be done.
The flip side is sometimes we forget to stop and check our own physical and mental health.
And I know it's taken a toll.
How's it going?
This is my dad.
- This your dad?
All right, fella, here we go.
(paramedics chattering) Are you here for a Steven Lui?
We just need an ambulance to transport him to Kaiser.
- [Paramedic] What difference did you see in him that made you call?
- [Richard] So his breath rate, basically.
- 36 breaths per minute.
It's pretty consistent.
- [Richard] Having watched him for the last six years, this is distress.
Heart rate 140, 150.
We've had scares like this so many times.
And the injury to you doubles and triples and it's a fact.
- [Paramedic] Worried about your breathing.
- [Richard] Each time, we have to be his voice.
What's up, buddy?
(Richard speaks indistinctly) - [Paramedic] You're fighting hard.
You got some fight in you.
- [Kristen] Everything you can do, you do.
Our dad, that fighter, he hasn't given up.
- [Richard] A long trip, kiddo.
- If you can hear me, Baba, blink once.
If you recognize me, blink once.
Oh, you still recognize me.
Little old me, huh?
Nice, you're still stretchy.
At some point, his brain is going to forget how to regulate his heartbeat and slowly he'll forget how to even breathe.
It's like watching somebody die in front of you and you can't do anything.
The biggest trouble I have is does he wanna go?
But he's still in there and he's still enjoying us.
It's more difficult.
(soft music) Very good Sunday to you.
Some of the stories that we are watching for you.
As of this weekend, new COVID cases increased by roughly 70% since a week ago while hospitalizations increased by over 35%.
States like California and Florida and those who are not ... COVID isolation took a toll.
Mom was left all alone.
Now as we did for my father, we monitor my mom using cloud cameras.
It's quite comforting to be with her remotely until something happens.
I wish I could do more.
You had to register?
- All right.
I don't always know how to feel about all this.
Oh, you first.
- Oh, there he is!
- For more than a year, I've had to visit my dad standing outside a window and he's laying down inside completely unaware of what was happening all around him, including mom falling.
This is the first time, in fact, we've been able to visit him inside in over a year.
What's up, fella?
- Hi, Baba.
- Thank you, Kathy.
Look how alert is your father.
(Kristen laughs) - Hi, Baba.
He loves this more than anything, right?
- Well, remember- - Oh, hi.
Are you scanning us?
- I love you, Baba.
- Look at your eyes.
- [Richard] I hope it didn't get stuck up there.
- Look at this.
Not a single wrinkle.
- I know.
- Unlike me.
- And eternal tan.
- [Richard] And eternal tan, yeah.
- [Kristen] Look, it's like lulling him to sleep.
- [Richard] My dad just turned 88 and he's still trucking along.
He made it through the pandemic not getting sick.
I mean, the guy's hanging on longer than we thought.
Good to see you.
(Stephen groans) - He's trying to talk to you.
- I understand, Baba.
(Stephen groans softly) But it's clear there's been a shift.
- [Kristen] I miss you.
I have to go.
(Kristen sobs) - [Richard] See you later, fella.
Be nice to everybody.
(somber music) (Kristen sobs) - [Kristen] Hits a little harder this time.
- [Richard] It's okay.
(Kristen sobs) (waves crashing) My dad passed away six months later.
But I think he let go when he was truly ready.
(soft music) And I got to be there to help him through all of it.
(soft music continues) - How are you doing today?
- Yeah, it's right back here.
- [Ultrasound Tech] So basically with this we're checking the valves inside the heart to make sure it's still squeezing properly.
- [Kate] And all the chemo hasn't done something crazy to it?
Yeah, you wanna make sure there's no, you know, extensive damage to the heart wall.
- [Kate] We're still doing workups to see if I get accepted into the trial.
- [Kate] I'm really hopeful about it though.
The drug is pretty promising.
- Oh, that's really good.
- [Kate] Better than just throwing chemo at the problem.
My fifth line of treatment just failed a couple of months ago and I saw progression in my liver and in my skeletal system.
When it gets into your soft organs you're worried about going into some kind of organ failure.
You know, you wouldn't think it's great to get diagnosed with cancer when you're younger, but, like, my liver's hung in there, my heart has hung in there, so ... - How old were you when you were first diagnosed?
- Oh, wow, I mean, it's amazing that you're, you know, kind of, I mean, you're attitude and everything.
It's just like it's- - Well, I've got a little boy, so I think if it were just me, I don't think I would do as much treatment as I've done.
- [Kate] But I wanna be around for him.
(birds chirping) (soft music) - Oh, good.. Did you see Byron?
- [Kate] Nice job.
You get a chore sticker.
- [Shane] Poom, poom, poom, poom, poom, poom, poom, poom I've been working from home for well over a year and almost three months now.
(laughs) There's one option.
COVID has helped us be able to spend more time together that we had actually not really had even right after Matthew was born.
- Thank you.
- We had 2020 be our year of kind of putting our family bond above everything else.
♪ Good morning, good morning ♪ How are you this morning ♪ Good morning, good morning to you ♪ - [Kate] 2020 was a hard year.
I went through three different treatments that didn't work out so well.
There was a period of time where I was on a drug that was making me very sick and it started causing lung problems.
I need your help.
I couldn't walk from my kitchen table to my microwave without getting short of breath.
It was a really scary time and I didn't know, I didn't know if I was gonna come out of that.
I felt for the first time that things were a little bit out of control.
I was losing the battle.
Oh, you already got that.
(Shane laughs) And I had to really on Shane a lot more.
I'm so aware of my surroundings.
Daddy already helped me out with something and I didn't even see it.
When I was in bed sick for over a month, he ran the show and he was able to step up and realize that even if he had to work full time, parent full time, handle the running of the house, without any help, he was actually able to do it.
- We're leaving in 11 minutes.
- All right.
- I'm a control freak.
I like to do things.
And for a long time, you know, I felt worried that he was gonna be able to do everything as I would've done it.
And I don't have that fear anymore.
- Love you.
- Love you too.
(birds chirping) - [Shane] So the last time you had a liver biopsy it was really rough on you.
Do I need to help you get to that appointment?
- I should be okay to just go get labs drawn.
- Maybe we not try and be Marine on this one and let's just- - Do you wanna be off work another day?
- Who doesn't wanna be off work?
I have been paralyzed throughout this journey before and felt like I couldn't act, I couldn't do anything, I couldn't think of myself at all.
2019 was a scarcity mentality.
It was what am I losing, when am I losing it, and being so anxious and worried that it was all consuming.
2021 Shane understands that I can't worry myself into a place where I can't function.
- It will be.
- [Shane] Basically, we just enjoy Shenandoah to the fullest extent.
- [Shane] Prior to the next treatment sprint.
- Why don't you (laughs) ... - But, luckily I- - So two years ago, I was hopeful that the family had maybe six or 10 years.
Yes, yeah, good girl.
You are a good girl.
Now I assume the clock is a lot shorter.
I really wanna take advantage of this summer.
I wanna travel.
- Thank you.
- [Kate] I feel good right now.
I want us to treat this summer like it might be our last one.
(children chattering) Matthew is almost seven.
He's asking more questions.
(children chattering) He said to me recently, he put his hands on the table, like a little adult and he said, "I'm gonna try to say this without crying but, Mom, when you die I'm gonna cry so, so hard.
It will be awful."
- One, two?
- Yeah, I'm gonna take him with me.
- That's all I wanted to wish for.
My mom having no cancer and not being tired.
(soft music) - Sorry, buddy.
Did you have a hard day?
What was it a hard day for?
You feeling tired?
- You see where your mask is?
- Are you just feeling sad?
- Yes, they have two years.
- [Kate] I mean, he knows.
He knows that something's not good.
One blessing about a longterm terminal illness is that you get to wrap your head around it and your family gets to do the same thing.
I mean, what's normal in our family is that mom is dying and I wanna do it with grace and I wanna do it, like, thoughtful about the feelings of the people around me.
Making sure that I'm calm about what's happening so I can help everybody around me be calm too.
(soft music) Jersey.
I know that when that time period comes I'm gonna break.
I'm gonna break hard.
That's the time for me and Matthew to walk through, walk through those gates until we're able to turn the page to open the next chapter.
(soft music) But I'm gonna let that come when it comes rather than break now and diminish the time period that we have left.
I'd rather fall deeper in love because you only get one of these in a lifetime.
(soft music) - I moved up here with my family in 2016 to kind of find some peace after being a Army ranger for 11 years.
Wears on you a little bit and I found that in the outdoors.
Peer relationships, supporting each other, getting in the outdoors, that's how you heal.
We take Veterans into the back country.
A lot of these folks that come out they aren't seeking actively to get treatment for physical or social or psychological ailments.
And literally, that peer relationship is the only therapy or treatment that they're taking at the time.
- So I think the second drug crisis that we have in America is the overprescribing of psychotropic drugs.
What we're finding is what is solving our problems is putting 35 pounds on your back and going and walking through the mountain for a couple days.
We're trying to be on the ground level of developing the evidence that proves the efficacy of these treatment modalities.
Glad you're here.
(group laugh) - This is a common human experience.
This is not something that we should hide, that we should be afraid of, that we should not address.
(soft music) So this is my PC from Afghanistan.
I will not ever get rid of it 'cause it fits me perfect.
This is a gift from my interpreter, Barack.
Of course, I have an Afghan flag in here.
It got banged up.
I look back on a lot of the losses that we suffered.
I still honor and think about those men every day.
But the shame that I used to carry with that, a lot of it's gone.
Sharing your pain is scary 'cause it's vulnerable.
Courage is being okay with that vulnerability.
(soft music) ♪ Happy birthday to you ♪ Happy birthday to you ♪ Happy birthday dear, dad, yay ♪ ♪ Happy birthday to you - Don't blow it yet, I gotta take a picture.
Hon, hon, hon, I gotta get the moment.
I gotta get the moment.
Okay, all right, go.
- What did you wish for?
What did you wish for?
- Got right in my face.
- Did you get smoked?
- Oh, I'm sorry.
- What did you wish for?
- What did I wish for?
- A grounded and peaceful year.
I'm proud of the way that we have been able to communicate with them about this and that we've been so intentional about it.
- Like, if we're all feeling stressed out and we need a little break to think- - Oh, you put shorts.
- we count to 10 and we think it through.
- When I was a kid, I memorized that whole book.
- You memorized, "Dreams"?
- And then, it was like okay.
Let's talk about this and we'll talk about this and we'll talk about this.
- A goal is just to slow down a bit to allow your system to relax.
Breathe in, taking air deep into your belly.
Think the number one.
Now exhale all of the air and think the word "relax."
- This is the perspective of the time and knowing yourself more.
I am in a place where you realize that the hurt goes away the more you look at it.
Things hurt more when you keep 'em in a box and you never deal with it.
You gonna make SPG block appointment?
- I need to.
- You got a headache right now?
You want me to put some oil you?
Yeah, put some oil on.
Having to confront that and get to a place where you can talk about that is really rewarding.
- Everybody in the bed.
- My bed wasn't- - Look, you got blankies all over the place.
What is going on here?
- I don't know why.
I woke up last night- - The only thing that kept me from taking my life- - [Child] Everybody else in this world (indistinct) I pray.
The reason that I can carry on is not because of duty, honor or country.
It's because of family, community, and love.
(indistinct) (soft music) (group chattering) - [Richard] After my dad passed, it's not like we thought everything was gonna be magically done, but we didn't expect mom to decline so fast.
It's tough and I'm learning that it's okay to not feel okay and that I have to keep on asking, while I care for her ...
So we'll just have leftovers, Mom.
Am I okay?
What do you think of the bars?
They're at the same height as this too.
- [Kristen] Yeah, all the aunties were impressed by how well she maneuvered that.
- [Richard] Where do you wanna sit to eat, Mom?
Wanna sit at the end here?
- Yeah, so Mom almost escaped to the garage.
- Is that correct?
- No, I only left her alone, like- - You make a run for it?
- I only left her alone five minutes today.
- The front window.
- Right now, we are literally on a 24/7 schedule.
She had two ears of corn.
So obviously, she got up and came back.
And the walker was right where it was.
- You had two ears of corn?
- I didn't eat two.
She caught at the first half.
- My oldest brothers are local, so they both come here on shifts.
So if there's not a caregiver or when my brother's here, Richard and I are monitoring her on the Nest.
- Mom, it's working.
- Well, I don't need- - She doesn't have OCD or anything.
It's been really, really hard with our mom for me.
- That's what I thought.
- And it happened so fast.
My parents are perfect, like, in my head, you know?
There's parts of me that just I don't wanna let go.
(soft music) - [Richard] They were never lovey-dovey.
They were not like, you know, sneaking kisses in the hallway or anything like that.
- I'll see you tomorrow.
See you tomorrow.
- [Richard] But to see the way she took care of him.
- After all the years I watched the two of them, it's almost as though my mom learned how to fall in love with him again.
- This is your special day.
("Happy Birthday") ♪ Birthday to you ♪ Happy birthday, dear baba I don't think she would've found that out without going through this journey, which has been so difficult, and which she has given so much of herself.
I know that he would have loved to be able to be here now to care for her.
As difficult as everything has been and what we've had to go through, I think his soul will say, "This was great for the family."
We shared the exhaustion, we shared the joy, we shared the pain, and we shared the rewards together.
It was tough, but we all got better somehow.
(soft music) You like that?
Feels good, huh?
(nurses chattering) ♪ It's hard to smile when there's her ♪ ♪ And no place could ever be warm ♪ ♪ It's hard a chore, different paths ♪ ♪ When we're stuck in an endless storm ♪ ♪ It's easier to shut out of the world ♪ ♪ Than to find another way ♪ It's easier to just retreat ♪ Simply say that it's all okay ♪ ♪ It's all okay ♪ It's all okay ♪ But there are inner forces that we don't see ♪ ♪ Saying life gets bigger to set us free ♪ ♪ When there's inner forces put us through the test ♪ ♪ Our hidden ones bring out our best ♪ ♪ But there are inner forces that we don't see ♪ ♪ Saying life gets bigger to set us free ♪ ♪ When there's inner forces put us through the test ♪ ♪ Our hidden ones bring out our best ♪ ♪ It's hard to take a moment to breathe ♪ ♪ And their pain take it slow ♪ Our energies fly and spirits will learn ♪ ♪ And we're left with a shattered soul ♪ ♪ It's easier to turn down a dark path ♪ ♪ And take the easy way out ♪ But it's never too late to open up ♪ - [Announcer] Funding for "Unconditional" is provided by- - With nearly 6 million of our 38 million members currently or having previously served in the military, we're in a mission to support veterans and military families.
To learn more, visit aarp.org/veterans.
(pleasant piano music) - Whether you provide daily care, participate in decision making, or simply love a person living with Alzheimer's or another dementia, the Alzheimer's Association is here for you around the clock.
Resources and information are available at alz.org.
(dramatic and serene piano music) (serene piano music continues) (serene piano music continues)