When Christine Stone found out she was pregnant, she couldn’t wait to share the big news with her friends and family. But there’s one person she’s had to tell more than once. Christine has had to announce her pregnancy to her mother, Setsuko Harmon, hundreds of times. Setsuko was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease eight years ago, and her short-term memory has been severely affected. “I can tell her and two to five minutes later she won’t remember,” Christine told People. “It’s like watching a kid at Christmas wake up and see his presents over and over again, because each time she gets so excited.”
While it is touching to see her mom get excited over and over again, Christine says it’s also very sad. Repeating the news of her pregnancy hundreds of times serves as a painful reminder of how far her mother’s illness has progressed. “She remembers long-term things, but her short-term is really affected,” Christine told People. “But when I give her the pregnancy news she claps and smiles each time and asks which month the baby is due. It’s very bittersweet.”
Still, Christine can’t wait for her mom to meet her baby girl when she’s born in October. “I expect her not to remember her, but I know when my mom meets my daughter she’s going to get excited every single time,” she says.