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"Ice Cream In the Cupboard"

Hope for the Caregiver / Peter Rosenberger
The Truth Network Radio
February 2, 2021 2:53 pm

"Ice Cream In the Cupboard"

Hope for the Caregiver / Peter Rosenberger

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February 2, 2021 2:53 pm

Pat Moffett details his journey with his wife, Carmen, following her early onset diagnosis with Alzheimer's disease. His book, "Ice Cream in the Cupboard was turned into a movie that can be watched on Amazon Prime. 

 

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Welcome to Hope for the Caregiver. I am Peter Roseberger.

Glad to have you with us. This is the nation's largest show for you as a family caregiver. Did you know that there are more than 65 million Americans right now that are serving as a caregiver? Maybe they're taking care of an aging loved one, special needs child, somebody who's been diagnosed with a grim illness, somebody who's been a victim of trauma. In my case, my wife was hurt back in 83 in a horrible accident. To date, it's cost her more than 80 surgeries, both of her legs amputated. And 100 doctors have treated her in 12 different hospitals. It's a massive ordeal. And I've been her sole caregiver now for over 35 years. So when you walk through something like this, what happens to you as a caregiver?

And this is what we talk about on the show. And how can you navigate through this a little safer, a little calmer, and dare I say it, a little more joyfully? You can appreciate beauty and joy and grow as an individual and become enriched through this process, but it is not easy. And it does take the help of others who reach into your situation with insights and with wisdom and with help and just being with you. All caregivers struggle with what I call the three I's. We lose our independence.

We become isolated and we lose our identity. For example, ask a caregiver, how are you feeling? And the caregiver will often and usually say, well, we had a bad night or she's not doing well, or he's okay, or our situation is such and such. It's very hard for a caregiver to speak in first person singular.

I hurt, I'm tired, I'm struggling. And these are important things for caregivers to learn to say. And we provide an environment where they can, through my radio show, through this show and others where they can just speak from their own heart.

It doesn't matter what comes after the word I, now we're having a real conversation. But so many of us, too many of us try to white knuckle this thing and somehow think that we can beat this or we could do this. We could handle all of this thing. We can.

Caregivers, I like to refer to them as high functioning multitaskers. And we really think that, and I think it's driven by sometimes our sense of obligation that we feel like this is mine. I got to do it.

It's my duty. I made a vow to my wife or I brought this child into the world or whatever. We think all these things that spur us on to inhuman levels of trying to do something to wrap our arms around something that cannot be contained. And this is the starting point for everything we do for the show of how we can learn to deal with those feelings and better walk through the craziness of whatever we're having to face as caregivers. And today's guest, we're going to have on after the break, we're going to bring on Pat Moffett. Pat wrote a book called Ice Cream in the Cupboard, and it was made into a movie. And wait till you hear his story. And it talks about early onset Alzheimer's for his wife who was in her 50s. And it is a powerful story. It's a hard story. It's a tough story. And there are painful things, but through it, you're going to see some things that are going to be applicable in your life today, in my life today of what we can glean for it and how we can be stronger and healthier.

And you know what? Healthy caregivers make better caregivers. It's okay for you to be healthy.

Did you know that? It is okay for you to be healthy. In fact, it's not only okay, it's imperative. Because if your head and your heart are messed up and you're not healthy emotionally, spiritually, what chance does your wallet have?

What chance does your job have for your other relationships or your body? So let's go to that place where we recognize that healthy caregivers do indeed make better caregivers. That is the hope for the caregivers, that we can live a better life through this. Doesn't mean we're going to do it without tears, but they don't have to be tears of despair.

They don't have to be tears of rage. And that's what I think you'll find in this show today. And I'm looking forward to introducing Pat Moffett to you. Listen, we got to take a quick break. We'll be right back. This is Hope for the Caregiver.

I am Peter Rosenberger. Hopeforthecaregiver.com. Healthy caregivers do indeed make better caregivers, and we'll be right back. 24 seven emergency support, increasing safety, reducing isolation. These things are more important than ever as we deal with the challenges of COVID-19. How about your vulnerable loved ones?

We can't always check on them or be there in ways we'd like. That's why there's Constant Companion, seamlessly weaving technology and personal attention to help push back against the isolation while addressing the critical safety issues of our vulnerable loved ones and their caregivers. Constant Companion is the solution for families today, staying connected, staying safe.

It's smart, easy and incredibly affordable. Go to www.mycompanion247.com today. That's mycompanion247.com. Connection and independence for you and those you care about.

Mycompanion247.com. I want to welcome Pat Moffett to the show today, and I saw his movie over the weekend and he and I talked several days ago and I didn't really know quite what to expect when I saw this movie. But I went in and did it and I sequestered myself so I could watch it kind of by myself.

And as I got into it, I appreciated that decision because I needed to experience this without a lot of other distractions going on. This is not the kind of movie you sit down with a box of popcorn kind of thing. You sit down with a sense of I'm going to learn and I'm going to embrace and I'm going to respect the trauma that early onset Alzheimer's does to a couple, to a family, to an individual. And this is a story about Pat and his wife, Carmen, who got this diagnosis when she was in her early 50s.

The movie is called Ice Cream in the Cupboard. It doesn't take long for anybody that's even remotely familiar with Alzheimer's to understand how you even come up with something like Ice Cream in the Cupboard as a title for this. And it's based on his book. And Pat wrote this and one of the things that moved me about this is that there was not an agenda to somehow vilify someone or vindicate someone.

It was about as honest a portrayal as you'll ever see in this situation. Now, early onset is a little bit different than when you are diagnosed much later in life. I just saw on the news, by the way, Pat, that Tony Bennett has come out and said so today it's five years old or close to it. There's going to be a much different path for Tony and his family than there was for Pat and his wife, Carmen, and their two children. And there is this is the this is not the first time I've heard about this, but it was the first time I've ever seen it. So we'll demonstrate and portrayed of the violence that can happen. And this is a big part of this story is that there was so much violence that as Carmen, this disease took over Carmen and not necessarily just directed at you. I mean, it was just violence in general. And so did you find out as you've been able to process looking back before we get into the meat of the story, did you find out why there's so much violence with early onset?

From what I understand from the doctors, this is kind of like a like inside the brain of a neuroendocrine patient. There's so many things that they want to do. And what's coming up is building is a frustration level is a very high frustration level. And that's when they lash out, you know, and they always have some kind of a security net, an invisible security net around them. You might have seen some of that.

And I don't want to give away some of the scenes in the movie. But there were there was a couple of things going on with that. And when you when you get through that security net, I don't trust you. What are you doing? What are you doing here? I don't know you. That sort of thing.

So the paranoia, the frustration and the paranoia and all these things, the disorientation and so forth. Because I there was a scene when you when you did the ice cream in the cupboard, I don't think we're going to give that away too much. But there's a scene when you said that and she's not saying I must have forgotten. She said, I didn't do that.

Right. That's a much different thing to say, hey, I forgot. Yeah, I didn't do that. There's almost a belligerence there of how dare you accuse me of something so crazy. I didn't do this. This is not me. That had to be incredibly disorienting to you to hear that the one thing somebody said, well, I forgot. Oh, I had a senior moment kind of thing. But that's not what's going on with her. Yeah.

Well, what the the the out the early onset Alzheimer's patient is always in some form of denial, especially if it's spousal. Carmen just wanted to relate to me that, listen, I'm fine. I don't know what you're getting so upset about. You know, why do you blame me for everything?

I didn't do that. You know, that's one of the things that they want. They want to make sure, you know, I'm OK. You know, don't don't worry about me. I'm good. You know, one of the things I do on this show is I spend a lot of time dealing with family members of alcoholics and addicts. And that is a common theme among addicts and alcoholics. I'm fine.

There's nothing wrong with me. In fact, I heard one person say that alcoholism and addiction is one of the few diseases out there that convinces you you don't have it. And there seems to be some parallels with this, not because of a substance abuse, but because of the way it affects the behavior. Yeah. Which which is different, say, for example, somebody like Tony Bennett.

Or, you know, with with elderly people on it, it's different from what I understand when they're in their 50s. Is that is that a fair assessment? Yes. Oh, yeah.

By far, by far. And so as you you were recipient of a lot of a great deal of violence and, you know, potentially things that could could take your life. Oh, yeah. And that's why I said, remember that the two points that the doctor was making, OK, you got to take care of yourself and you have to learn that bad things can happen to you and you need to be ready for. And so, yeah, I mean, it's one thing as a caregiver, I get that taking care of myself. It's another thing to go to bed every night wondering if somebody is going to be standing over you, ready to assault you, stab you, hit you or whatever.

That's a much different set of of of fear parameters, if you will. And how did you deal with that? Well, it was, you know, it was just something you had to learn to live with for a while. The real difficult part was not having anybody to be able to hire to work for you because I would hire a caregiver during the day so I could go to work and come home early and bathe her and do all this. And then the housekeeper would come in and she would do the laundry.

And then they started to get punched around. So they said, you know, I'm sorry, Mr. Marvin, I'd like to help you, but I just got hurt yesterday and I got hurt again today. And I got it. I'm out of here.

So until you find someone, but really, I don't. No one wants to handle your wife's case, you know. So when we went, we had an Alzheimer's Daycare Center when I couldn't hire anybody anymore. They had an Alzheimer's Daycare Center out here on Long Island. And so I put her in there, was very expensive, nothing covered by insurance, everything came out of my bank account.

And that went on for, I guess, about three months, I was able to go to work, pick her up and try to get back into that routine. Then she started to beat up people in the Alzheimer's Center. And that's when the doctors came to me and said, listen, okay, you look terrible. Your heart rate is awful.

Your blood pressure, I mean, and she's hurting people. You need to go into this cottage center for the anti-psychotic drug medications to find out which cocktail or mixture will work best for Carmen. So having led the believer, okay, this is what I really need now. I got pretty excited. So I went home and I painted the whole house. You know, I went, oh, I got to make this joyful.

We're going to make it like a coming home party. She'll have these drugs and everything. And then they told me, sorry, you know, we can't tell you what to do, but we can tell you that if you do take your wife home, these medications are not treatable at home.

You can't do it. That's why you need 24-7 care. And that just completely destroyed me. And a lot of people don't understand, you know, when you get this level of violence, okay, well, how bad could this be? It could be very bad because she was an otherwise physically healthy woman in her early fifties. So she was not a weakling. Oh, not at all.

And then when you have the added component of psychotic type behavior, these are terribly frightening things. What about your kids? How did they deal with this? It was basically her and I at the time, just at home.

There was no kids living at home. They were out and they were living around the country and going to college out of state. So it was basically us two.

One of my sons was in and out and he would help me out once in a while. But, you know, they were fearful as well. They didn't want to see their mom like that. Just broke their heart.

So you're like that. As you've done this movie and the book, when you wrote this out, first off, who told you to write a book about this? Was that something you came up with or people kept saying, hey, you really need to write this out? No, I just came up with myself and I said, I have to get this story out there somehow because I had no idea this even existed. And I found out I'm one of the guys on the block that's behind schedule here, that it's been out there for a while, but not enough. And I said, well, people better learn.

They need to learn it from me. I'm going to write this book. Had you written anything before? No, I was a corporate executive and never took any professional writing courses at all. It was just kind of a knack that I had. I was always a good business writer and I wrote some short stories and articles and that kind of thing in the cargo business that I was in.

Other than that, no professional training. I remember writing my first book and if I had known I was going to be a writer, I would have paid a lot more attention in class. I graduated, thank you, Laudy. My manuscript came back with so much red ink, I thought I'd been stabbed. But you've really created something extraordinary here. And were there moments when you just kind of put your head down at the keyboard and just sobbed or what was that like for you? Well, I used to actually, I would do some of my work.

I did everything on a yellow pad. I didn't do it on a keyboard. And then I would send it over to someone that would transcribe it to my editor. And I would know what was coming next.

And I would hit that point and she said, okay, you sending me anything this week? And I went, no, give it a week. And she says, you don't sound well. I says, because I know what's coming next. And I have to work on that. I have to get myself mentally together to be able to write that for you.

And you'll see what I mean when you get it. And she said, okay, fine. And then I would take my time, pace around a little bit. Didn't do anything for a couple of days. And then I'd say, okay, let me sit down with this.

And actually would have a little glass of wine. And off I went and I would get through those really tougher ones that you'll see when you read the book. What did you do after you wrote that down? How did you decompress? I've written some painful scenes in my own life and I know that I had to go out and decompress after this. What did you do? I didn't really, I can't really say I decompressed by going to my job as a full-time basis and really getting into it. And I was traveling to China and I have a very exciting position. So I kind of threw myself into the work as my form of kind of decompressing.

I didn't go out and party, didn't take vacations. You know, a while back I started doing martial arts and that really helped me a lot. You've heard of Shogun. I've shown enough. No, I'm just kidding. We got a guy from Long Island and we got a guy originally from South Carolina. Of course, I live in Montana now, but they're still trying to figure out my Southern accent out here.

So I hope it's coming through with you. I watched this unfold. Now you had creative control over the movie.

So there was an element of realism that you were able to make sure that it didn't get away from you. They didn't try to make it a nice, tidy bow. Cause I don't like movies like that. That have a nice, we're just going to tie everything together. That's an escapism, romantic comedy or whatever. This didn't have a nice, tidy bow. This is a, this is, it's almost like, here it is deal with this.

Yeah. And, and it's not an entertaining movie in the sense of, even though it is so well done and the guy that played you tell me again, is it Dana or Dale? Dana Ashbrook.

Dana Ashbrook. Sorry about that. I'm sorry, Dana, forgive me for that.

If you're watching this, forgive me for that. Just know that you did a spectacular job. The guy that played your father, I love that scene with you and your dad there when he's in the hospital and I'm not giving anything, but that was, I love that. And I was talking to a buddy of mine. As soon as I finished the movie, I texted him. I said, he's one of my closest friends.

I said, I want you to promise me that you're going to watch this the next morning, get up early morning, watch it. And he said, he was just a wreck. He was just soppy because he had just taken care of his dad through Alzheimer's who'd passed away. And he said, it was one of the, he said, I've never seen anything like this, where the story, the acting and the directing were all beautifully done. And we both referenced the scene with your dad, who was obviously quite a character.

Yeah. Was that, was that a fairly accurate representation of him in the movie? It was an accurate representation, but it wasn't my dad. It was my grandfather in, in real life, but we didn't want, my grandfather died at 98. So we didn't know what to do with Tobin Bell. So we said, okay, let's take it down a notch.

Let's make him my dad. Okay. But the character himself is still the same. Oh, well, he was, he was rich. And, uh, I wrote that scene by the way. So, well, that, that was a great scene.

And, and I think that the audience is going to really appreciate that and love that because it, uh, again, he didn't feel this need to wrap it all up in nice package. It is what it is. And this a long time ago, a friend gave me a great piece of advice as I was struggling as a caregiver and he said, look, it is what it is.

Yeah. And, and another time he told me, uh, he said, learn to learn to make friends with ambiguity. And uh, and I thought there's some real meat to that because I don't have to know everything. I don't have to get this all figured out. I'm not going to have the answers that I want to have. And that's okay.

It's all right. I want to, I want to ask you a couple of just, I'm just throwing these things out to you because I just, I find you such a fascinating individual and, and I mean, we're, we're two male caregivers who care for our wife and, and your wife has since passed away, but, but you, I, I, there's just this bond that we have as, as husbands who loved their wives and we're not, we're flawed individuals who are doing the best we can with an impossible situation. But I heard this quote that about hope and despair and despair is when you have this, um, you are absolutely convinced of how this is going to end and then it's not going to end well. And you're absolutely convinced of it. And hope is when you don't know quite how this is going to end. Now, we all know when you get the diagnosis of Alzheimer's, this is not going to end well for the patient, but there's, there's that unknown of this doesn't have to end.

We're Pat. Right. And you know, there was that hope that you are going to be able to have a meaningful life and become a richer person through this process. There is that hope that you can do.

It's not guaranteed. Like you said, we could lose two patients from this thing, but there is that hope that you can. And that's, that's what happened to you. I talk about that a little bit because you have gone on to live, uh, you survived it and not only survived it, you've gone on now to do something extraordinary.

Talk a little bit about that growth process with you through this. Well, you know, one of the things that you said is hope, and if you lose hope, you lose everything. So you kind of never really let that go.

That was your little piece to hold on to forever until that final breath came. But you know, going through this, you know, my friends are coming to me and saying, listen, you know, common is really at this point in time, a vegetable. And why did you come out with us? Let's have a couple of beers. You know, I have a, uh, there's a couple of women that maybe we'll introduce you to.

It'd be nothing more than maybe having dinner with that kind of thing, but you really have to get out and take a little breather and start thinking of your future. You have to do it. So I had some good friends that kind of pushed me in that direction and I, and that's something that I really needed. I didn't know how bad until I got out there and did it. Did you, um, when, when she died, yes. Where was your head space in that moment when you realized, okay, this is, this is now over. I mean, you knew it was coming. You hadn't had any kind of relationship with her in some time, even though you saw her, but she couldn't, she wasn't, she wasn't like said she was, she was non functioning.

What was that like for you? It was a great part of me, Peter, that said, thank God it's over because I didn't want her to see her like that, you know, muscle atrophy with all her fingers all bent in complete vegetable laying in a chair. You couldn't feed her anymore by, by, uh, with a utensil. Uh, and that's not the way Carmen wouldn't want to be seen.

Uh, and she had for 12 years, this was just all way over the top. So there's a part of me that just said, I'm really good and I'm really glad this is over. That's how I really felt sense of relief. Did you have these friends that helped you get out and so forth? Did you have a core group around you that just, just stuck with you, that, that band of brothers around you? Did you have those kinds of relationships that would, that would not be afraid of the trauma respected, the trauma that you were in, but, but not be afraid to talk to you with blunt force truth.

And I mean, I know you're from long Island, so, you know, being blunt and from long Island, I think are mutually, I mean, those are synonymous terms, but, but you still got to have people that respect the trauma that you're in, but at the same time will speak truth to your heart in it. Did you have those kinds of relationships and if you did, how important were they? I did have those. I was very lucky to have those. And I, I know those fellows today and gals and, and guys, and, uh, that, that meant a lot to me that they were, uh, they were there for me that I wasn't going to have to go through this alone. It was difficult enough once common went into nursing care to live alone in that house. All the memories are there.

You can still hear kids running up and downstairs and that kind of thing. So, uh, they had to kind of drag me out a little, but once they did, the support was just there for me. And, and I realized when it really started to get better, I realized how bad I needed it, but yeah, they were there for me as a good group. Well, the reason I ask you is, you know, when I do the show and I, and I interact with caregivers all over the country and, and so many of them are trying to white knuckle this thing by themselves and caregivers suffer from three eyes. We lose our independence. We become isolated and we lose our identity. We just, we just lose ourselves in someone else's story. We don't even know how to speak in first person singular anymore.

We go through that space. Well, how are you doing? Well, we had a bad night, you know, or how are you doing? Well, she's not doing too well.

And I, there was a scene in the movie where the doctor basically kind of called you on that because, uh, and I don't know how accurate that particular character was for the physician, the, the, I guess she was a neurologist. Yes. Uh, yeah.

Jamie can play that role. Yeah. Yeah. And I don't know if that was a compilation of several positions, but you know, when asking, how are you doing? And you kind of spouted off the standard caregiver reply, you know, well, we're doing this, you know, she said, you know, it's my medical diagnosis. You look like crap, you know, and, and those are important things to hear. How was that for you to hear that? Were you able to, were you able to hear that and process what she was saying to you? Uh, it, it, when I first heard it, I became very angry. I mean, who are you to tell me I'm Pat Moffett.

That's my wife. I know what I'm doing. Okay. I'll get through this.

Okay. Don't, don't, don't hit me with all your medical stuff. I know how I feel, you know, kind of thing, because you just wouldn't give up that ghost.

You just wouldn't do it. And then when I began to think about it over a couple of days about what you said about how I felt, then it started to sink in a little bit better. So that's when I really understood what was happening to me. I I've had people get into my face about that. And it is hard. It's very hard, but it is so important. And, and I, I, I respect anybody who has the courage to tell somebody like you and somebody like me, you know, we're formidable people. We're very competent people. A lot of caregivers are, we're very, I tell people caregivers are high functioning multitaskers, but we do need to hear those kinds of hard truths of say, look, dude, this is not working out for you.

Yeah. And, and it's, it's time for you to take a step back. I remember, you know, a friend of mine said, look, she has a savior. You ain't that savior. And and that's hard to hear.

It is, it's painful. Nobody wants to hear it, but as a buddy, he said, the truth will set you free, but it's going to piss you off first. And you, you write that one down, they'd take that one to the bank and it does, the truth did set you free, but it really got into your crawl.

Didn't it? Oh yeah. And by, and by far, uh, and you know, because I was there, this is, uh, you know, uh, in sickness and in health and here I am, okay, this is my job.

I'm the husband. I have to do this and I'm going to do it. Uh, but you know, when you look at it, it kills me.

What's up? No matter if it kills me, I'm going to do it, you know, uh, but you don't have other diseases. You have, if you have cancer, you have a chemo, you have a treatment, you know, there's, there's always some realistic, scientific medical health here, you know, going in it's, it's over when it starts, you know, that's only the only ending we see right now. Well, and, and, and that brings me to where you are because that that's, that's the one variable in this. Yes, it is over the moment you get this diagnosis, you know, where this is going to go for the patient. Yeah.

The variable is where's it going to go for the caregiver. Yeah. And you have shown in this, in this movie, in this book and in your life and this interview today with me that, that there is, that variable is incredibly important.

Where did it go for Pat and for Pat? Yeah, it was painful. You got the scars. Your S your heart will always bear those scars, uh, of what this did to you.

But at the same time, I look at the line of people behind you who are able to walk a little easier on a trail that you cut through a very dense forest. And, um, I, I hope that that brings you a sense of, um, a real purpose and mission and, and, and even comfort and peace and encouragement in this, because it's, it's important that it really is to know that you have done something for so many that you'll never see. I mean, you, you, you're, you're never going to be able to see all the people that you have touched through this thing, but they're, but they're going to, they're going to see you. They're going to, you're going to feel the work that you've done.

And just like my buddy in Connecticut, who was watching this, you, you probably never going to meet this guy, but I guarantee you he's never going to forget you. Well, you know, that that's the whole idea is, is to let's help these caregivers, uh, get through this stuff. Uh, there was a, uh, before we have time for a quick story, uh, we have all the time. Listen is patient as you've been with me while I go through this technical stuff and I'm going to double check to make sure this thing recorded afterwards.

We got all the time you want, Pat, you're snowed in in New York right now with what two feet of snow. Oh yeah. But anyway, uh, we had a, I had a, I have a caregiver group that I take out about once a month, uh, before COVID anyway. And, um, it's about 12 or 13 people, uh, all caregivers or where we onset caregivers, men and women, and it's all spousal. And a woman came that night and sat in a chair almost in front of where my main seat was, where I could do this speaking with two social workers that went with me all the time. And they said, since we have new faces here tonight, could everybody just maybe go around and say who they are, where you come from and what kind of, what patients do you have as a frontal lobe dementia, you know, or one of the others, any of the other types of things, they all Alzheimer's or dementia patients.

Yeah. So all caregivers for dementia related things. So they said to this woman, she said, my name is Martha so-and-so and she said, I came here for one reason. And she said, I I'm seeing now, as I listened to all these people, this is where I belong, but it wasn't my intention to come here for that.

My intention to come here was to see Pat Moffett and thank him for saving my life. Peter, the tears just dripped down my face. I wasn't ready for this at all.

Neither was anybody else. And she said, I was at the end of my rope. It was over for me.

I couldn't watch my husband just deteriorate like this in front of me. You know, I wanted to end my life. I just wanted to end my life. And she said, I picked up ice cream in the cupboard and I read it. And she said, I said, if Pat Moffett can do this, I can do this too. And she said, it raised me up.

That's why I drove 40 miles tonight is to say that now I'm just happy to be here. And I was stunned at that, that I had reached one person that maybe saved her life. Well, I think you've done more than that, Pat. I really think you have. You've profoundly affected me.

And that's, like I said, I've been doing, I'm in my 35th year of dealing with this as a caregiver, not for the same circumstances you dealt with, but very much different, but very difficult. I just, I was, I was, um, deeply moved. Uh, and Gracie would tell you, that's my wife. And she'd tell you, you know, I was, uh, she came, she came out as like the last, almost 10, 15 minutes of the movie. And I'm like, you got to just leave me alone. Just leave me alone. And she was really mad at me.

She's like, you know, I just, I was just going to the bathroom. Why, you know, but I said, I got it. And I looked at it, I had tears coming. I said, I got to respect this man's trauma because what he's doing is he's giving us insight into something that is just tearing people apart. And it's so important for us to know this. I don't know that I told you, this is the movie I want to recommend to everybody to watch. And I want to recommend to no one to watch because I know what it'll cost them to see it, but I know that they, that people need to see this.

Yeah. And it's, um, social workers need to see it. Pastors need to clergy that every counselors, anybody that is any way associated with intersecting people who are going through this need to see it. I think almost though, if you're going through this acutely right now, and I would say this to my listeners, if you're going through this and as a spouse, particularly, I would not recommend seeing this alone. I would recommend seeing this with a trusted friend or somebody who could just comfort you and hold you through this movie. Because if you see this by yourself, it may be, it may be so it may cut so deeply with you that you would want to have somebody just, just a trusted friend to hold your hand, or pardon me.

Wouldn't be any harm in bringing a trusted friend with you for sure. No, you really kind of, and then, and that's, I think that's kind of the whole point because, and let me just say this to, to listeners for just a minute. You can trust Pat in this movie with your pain.

Okay. Uh, you can, you can trust Pat with it because he understands it and he respects it. And as you watch this story unfold and you see yourself in this, please know that you really can trust it, but he's not going to take you into a place where there is no hope, but he is going to paint a realistic picture so that you have a better way of expressing what's going on with you and that you know that you're not alone. And, and it's, it's not that mystery loves company. It's just that we were not, you know, there's the first thing John Milton said this, the first thing that God said that was not good was that man was alone.

You know, that's the first thing he said that was before the fall. Go back and look it up in Genesis. God said, Hey, it's not good that he's alone. We should not be alone. And if you're caring for somebody who's going through this or anything like this, whether it's whether there's such intensity like this, it's not good for you to be alone.

Pat demonstrates this, uh, in this movie, in this book. And, and that's why I did it so that you would know that you're not alone, that there are other people who go with this. You don't have to just keep all this bottled up inside of you. Pat, did you ever go and get any type of counseling for yourself? Oh yes, absolutely.

Yeah. I went, uh, when I, uh, when I found out that she wouldn't be coming home anymore, which is of course one of the key scenes with Dana Ashbrook. Uh, I went home, I think I cried for seven hours straight.

I was just hysterical. I worked on the house. Uh, I was planning a little welcome home sort of party and it was over that day. There was no going back. It wasn't more, let's come back tomorrow and talk about it again.

It was over that day. And I walked into my doctor's office, just a general practitioner with a pair of shorts, sandals and a t-shirt on. I was always a well-dressed executive in that when I went to see him and I said, I need to sit down. And then he said, come right in. And I said, doctor, I need to give me some help.

I don't know anything about therapists or psychologists. So I need to talk to somebody. And he knew the case because he knew Carmen and he fixed me up that afternoon, got me into see somebody. And I stayed with that for a long time. How important was that to you? Critical, critically important. I started to see myself from the outside looking back in again. That's the point I want to make to, to listeners here, because here's this guy who's a very strong, successful, bright, articulate corporate executive and he's raising his hand and said, doc, I got to have some help. And if Pat Moffett can do that, so can each of us. And raise our hands and say, we got to get some help.

I want to pivot just a little bit in the last few minutes of closing. After Carmen passed away, you started building a new life and you met a lovely lady. You've remarried.

But you said your vows to her. That had to be a moment for you. It had to be a moment for you. When you got to the point where saying, in sickness and in health, that had to be a moment, wasn't it? Or was it? It was because I think I was married very early in life after Vietnam. Marriage lasted a year. But those were just kind of words that were, okay, you read this and then you read this and then you put the ring here and you put the ring there.

It was almost like a standard operation. And then of course, having to deal with Carmen over the years, and I started to reflect back on it going, wow, those words. I was watching a movie and suddenly the words hit me. So when I said those words to Marlene, my present wife, it was just, I said them so slowly and so meaningful.

And I want her to know, I really mean this. You were planning your flag in that particular hill, weren't you? Yeah, absolutely. Last thoughts that you want to share with anybody, whatever's on your heart, Pat, you cannot know what a blessing you've been to me today. And I'm so grateful that you're stuck in a snowstorm and you don't have anything else to do.

Well, I mean, the root of the whole idea is what it all started out to be. People like you are helping me right now by doing this. There's some care. We're going to pick up on this. If I can just help one person that's going to get by a little bit and say, wow, I know what I think I should do now. I learned something. So as long as I'm teaching and somebody is learning, I'm a happy guy. Well said and beautiful. I cannot stress enough how important this is for fellow caregivers to check this book out and this movie out.

It's called Ice Cream in the Cupboard. And by the way, do you have an audio book of this as well? No, I've been I've been actually funny. You should mention it because I've been pressed to do an audio book. I'm considering it. And a couple of people heard me speak on stage that were at the premiere of the film on our own. And they said, you should do your own audio book. You don't need an actor. Your voice is the right pitch to do this.

And you think so. I said, well, maybe I will. I would concur with that.

I don't see any reason why you need it. And it's it's a little laborious and it may be one of those things that's kind of painful to go back and as you're saying these lines again and so forth in the book. But I think it'd be great for people to hear that in your in your voice. And so I would I would highly encourage you to do that.

And when you do, let me know and we'll tell people about it as well. The movie is is spectacular. Last question.

I know we got to go here. But last question, when you I mean, you've not been in the movie business, I assume. Never prior to this. So how was that for you? Was that was that a was that a fun experience? Did you enjoy just the logistics of the film business?

I'm in I'm enjoying it now more than I did at the beginning. It was a real learning curve because I was really out of my league from the international trade industry being in China and out all the time and coming into entertainment. You know, I know a lot about them and I watch it on television and I go to the movies. And so it was a big, big curve. And getting to know these characters and how the mechanics of how things work was a big learning curve. I'm a little more comfortable now.

And I was really, really stressed back then, very stressed two, three years ago. Well, it was it was it was well done. I don't know who I forgive me for not remembering who helped you with the screenplay or anything, but well done. Director did a good job. There was I'm not giving away anything. But at the beginning, when you first met Carmen and you're in the seafood shack or wherever this place is and the guy at the keyboard, I love that scene with the with his stepson at the keyboard.

And did he really play time in a bottle? And I actually all my guys were millennials, my crew. And I said, listen, oh, I want I want this couple to dance together. All right. And we have no music. I said, just put them in a slow dance. I told a director, I said, I'll figure out the music. So he says, well, can I ask you what you had in mind?

He's only 28 years old. The director, fabulous guy. And he said, well, I says, well, I have time in a bottle by Jim Croce is a soul that common love and we dance to all the time. He went time and oh, what from Jim who? Oh, they had no idea who this guy was.

It's a good thing you didn't mention CCR to him. They would have really had their heads blown off. That would have been that would have been my boy. I wound up getting an attorney doing all the applications and the Croce family came back to BMI and and authorized me that they were very sensitive to Alzheimer's as well and authorized me their one time use of the of the music.

That's how it got in. That is spectacular because you couldn't have picked a better song to open up the thing with. And and as a pianist, I got to tell you, whoever did the piano work on it, particularly at the very end.

Jason Rose is excellent. Yeah, beautiful, beautiful job. So if you talk to him, just just just please mention that it was just gorgeous.

And it's it was just a delight. Ice cream in the covered Pat Moffett. And you can go to Pat Moffett dot com.

That's two F's, two T's. Right. Pat Moffett dot com for more information. Prime free on it for Amazon Prime. Yeah, it's free on it. Watch it with a trusted friend if you're in the middle of this right now. And if you are a social worker or a counselor or clergy or anything else, watch it.

You know, if you're easily offended by salty language, get over it because, you know, when you're a caregiver through some of these things, you're just going to have to just deal with it because it's just get over it. It's a it is well worth the time. And I'm very, very, very grateful for the time that I had here today with Pat.

My pleasure. I really love my interview with Pat and I felt like it would be appropriate to end with a song. This is a song that I wrote and Gracie sings it. You heard her earlier coming in from the break and I love her voice. And this is a song that is very special to me. I wrote it with a friend of mine in Nashville, Buddy Munlock.

And it's called I Can Only Hold You Now. And I thought you might enjoy hearing this on the tail end of this conversation to have with Pat. You know, it's it's a tough journey that we have as caregivers and we need to hear stories like Pat and we need to hear from people who've been there, done that, and they've made it through and they've cleared a path for us. And I'm just very grateful.

I hope this has been meaningful to you, too, and I hope you enjoy the song with Gracie. I know what this means. I'm not unaware.

I understand the cost, what I pay to care. I see who you are. I see all you've been. I still love you now, like I did way back when. I wrote her, but I'm still here walking with you. Right here, right now, that's all we can do. In this moment, I live my life with you. I know there will be sorrow.

We'll face that somehow. But my hands can't hold tomorrow. I can only hold you now. Memories have wings. Some will fly away. I will keep them safe.

And we still have today. I look in your eyes. You smile back at me. All I need to know, right there for me to see. I wrote her, but I'm still here walking with you. Right here, right now, that's all we can do.

In this moment, I live my life with you. I know there will be sorrow. We'll face that somehow. But my hands can't hold tomorrow. They can only hold you now. I know there will be sorrow. We'll face that somehow. But my hands can't hold tomorrow.

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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-28 20:05:37 / 2023-12-28 20:25:27 / 20

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