Thursday , January 21 2021

A touching tribute to Elie Semoun to his father who died of Alzheimer’s

TESTIMONIAL – Elie Semoun recently lost his father to Alzheimer’s disease. The comedian confided in front of the cameras this Sunday from September to eight, presenting a poignant story of slow degradation to which this disease, “a real bastard”, forced him to participate.

Sometimes a squeaky humorist combined with a chameleon actor, here’s what we know about him. But today Elie Semoun is first and foremost a desperate son who has just lost his beloved father to Alzheimer’s disease. For two months he still does not realize that he is gone, and he supported him to the end.

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In order to better tell the story of the fight they fought together, Elie Semoun therefore decided to include this slow degradation of images in a moving documentary that will soon be air and which Seven to eight reveals large passages this Sunday November 29th. As his father began to lose his bearings, he was losing his mind and then no longer recognizing him, detailing the unbearable suffering of the gradual disappearance of a loved one.

It was four years ago. The first symptoms of the disease begin to appear. Paul Semoun is 84 years old. “It started almost fun. He was in the countryside and he imagined that someone would come to him to borrow a car, drive at night and give it back in the morning. So we’d say, “Dad, that’s impossible, it doesn’t exist.” At first, we laughed at it, and I laughed a lot with my father because he had a lot of humor “, says the artist in front of the cameras Seven to eight.

“But the more it goes, the less fun” continues as anger gradually takes over the humor. “I got phone calls from him saying that someone was at his house. I also had to go home urgently because he had lost his keys and presumably had been stolen from him “, He said. In front of him, his unfazed father is also irritated, telling him: “You think I’m a fool because I’m telling you it happened.” Well, I’m not crazy anyway!

True, it is hopeless, sad, there are no other words. It’s a little death that is coming, it’s actually sad.– Elie Semoun

It is indeed difficult to admit to being sick. That’s why Elie Semoun decides to bring her father back to his place of birth, Morocco. “We want to say to ourselves: ‘hey, if I do this, maybe it will click in his brain and maybe he has come to his senses’then hopes. Unfortunately, there is no expected effect. “I could have told him about it two months later, I don’t think he would remember it, so my sister and I told each other that there really was a problem.”, I admit.

And this ordeal will completely change the daily life of the artist who decides to take it home with him. But the more days pass, the more difficult intercourse becomes. His father grew angry and repeated the same questions tirelessly, wondering where he was and what he was doing there. “It’s true she’s hopeless, sad, no other words. It is a small death that promises to be, it is indeed sad “laments Elie, also emphasizing the enormous impotence that results from it.

But in these difficult times that father and son are going through, there are also moments of grace: “Moments I’ll never forget as we go to light the wood at the bottom of the garden where we both laugh as he makes me his Moroccan salad that knows how to do it”, he recalls. Elie Semoun also claims that he has been relatively preserved: his father has not forgotten him. “It happened once, he opened one eye, looked at me and said,“ Who are you? “. And there, it hit me, I said to myself “oh no it’s not true as long as I don’t experience it”, I admit.

“There are two deaths, his physical death and then the death of his memory, so we gradually disappear into his mind. It’s scary to think I’ve lived fifty years with him. I kissed him, said I love him, and now I’m a stranger to him, it’s terrible “he adds.

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Placement in nursing homes is a difficult choice

Months pass, and the disease is taking over more and more. It’s not time for lightness anymore. Elie Semoun remembers the words his father said at the time: “I’m embarrassed”or “Better if I die because I’m bothering you”. Words that break your heart. “It’s really nonsense, this disease, it’s impossible. When it touches the brain, it affects everything, its intellectual, physical integrity. It’s really a hellish shipwreck “, analyzes, admitting that he was sometimes unfair to his father, screaming at him a little, quickly irritating his misunderstandings. “I was angry with him for acting like you blame someone who is sick, but how can you blame him?” he asks himself.

As her illness progresses, Elie Semoun must choose to place her father in a nursing home, but the latter has great difficulty admitting it. “Then I told myself it would not be easy. Besides, one of the first things he said when he went to this Ehpada was, “are there only old people there? ‘”he confesses. Difficult choice, but the only one possible when you have a parent with this condition.

The inevitable fall will occur on September 12, but one thing is for sure for Eli, this imprisonment hastened his father’s death. “Someone with Alzheimer’s disease, who doesn’t know where he is, and is not visited by his family, has been abandoned for him. He told the nurses so. even though we could see him on video and called him on Facetime. I’m not saying that my father would still be alive, but in any case, we wouldn’t have missed a month of love to exchange, and that was decisive in his condition. It is certain and certain “, he laments, bitter.

Elie will go to her father’s bed one last time before disappearing. “At least we thought we were loving each other, it’s really the most important thing. We’ve come to the end “he concludes. Today, this film tribute remains, of course a shameless testimony, but necessary because what Elie Semoun experienced, more than a million families accompanying the patient with Alzheimer’s disease, live today in France. The number of cases is expected to double by 2040.

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