Why I Walk – April Toliver

AprilToliver

My name is April Toliver and I Walk to End Alzheimer’s in memory of my maternal grandma Georgia Woolfolk-Nelson-Williams.

I remember as a small child going to visit my Nannie, as I fondly called her. She was always so happy and full of life. She was a very strong, god-fearing woman that left her footprints in many hearts along her journey.

She was a loving mother of 7, grandmother of 23, great grandmother, sister, aunt and great aunt.

I lost my beautiful Nannie in 1992 when I was only 12 years old.

I cherish the little memories I do have of her.

I so vividly remember my peanut butter and jelly sandwiches she fixed me for lunch (I absolutely love peanut butter now, I often wonder is that just my way of holding on to her); or the all the little nursery rhymes, children songs and games she taught me (Annie-Over-Here She Comes).

So imagine a few years later that this same loving woman doesn’t even remember your name. She doesn’t recognize you. She thinks you’re some neighborhood child coming to hug her.

Aren’t Nannies supposed to be your best friends? Who’s going to play with me and fix me peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?

She lived in a disoriented world, where the simplest words and names of family members and friends escaped her. She became aggressive and combative toward loved ones.

Alzheimer’s has many stages.

Some can remember people and events that occurred in the past, yet they have no idea what they did or ate a few minutes ago.

The worst part about this disease is slowly, over time, you watch your loved one leave you.

I was robbed of many other memories due to the horrible disease and I miss her more now as an adult than anyone could possibly imagine.

Please join me in the fight to #ENDALZ.

You can now register for the 2015 Walks to End Alzheimer’s!

Northern Neck – Middle Peninsula; Saturday, September 19th at Bethpage Camp Resort. Register and donate at bit.ly/NNMPWalkToEndALZ2015

Fredericksburg; Saturday, September 26th at University of Mary Washington. Register and donate at bit.ly/FredericksburgWalkToEndALZ2015

Richmond Walk to End Alzheimer’s; Saturday, November 7th at Innsbrook. Register and donate at bit.ly/RVAWalkToEndALZ2015

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