Alzheimer's Daughter

The Story

Alzheimer’s Daughter introduces the reader to my healthy parents, Ed and Ibby, years before their diagnosis, then recounts painful details as our roles reversed and I became my parents’ parent.


Their disease started as translucent, confused thoughts and ended in a locked memory care unit after a near decade of descent into the opaque world of Alzheimer's.

I began writing Alzheimer’s Daughter one week after my mother's death––when I was stunned, realizing Dad had no memory of her or their 66-year marriage.

I write to pay tribute to the undying spirit at Ed and Ibby's core, and with the hope that the story of their parallel decline might be helpful to others.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Powerful Memoir by Deborah J. Cohan "Welcome to Wherever We Are" Deals with Emotional and Verbal Abuse and Caregiving for a Loved One with Dementia

I was so excited to connect with this week's featured AlzAuthor, Deborah J. Cohan, a professor of sociology and former counselor, author of the memoir Welcome to Wherever We Aresubtitled A Memoir of Family Caregiving and Redemption. Her book addresses difficult, yet important topics. 

Deborah writes: 

The book is a braided memoir detailing my role as a caregiver for my father who had been emotionally and verbally abusive to my mother and to me. So, really, I was writing about two weighty experiences that feel riddled with confusion---domestic violence and caregiving for a loved one with dementia. Both topics---abuse and dementia---are intense because they each carry so much stigma, shame, secrecy, and silence. The book is a meditation on what we hold onto, what we let go, how we remember others and how we’re remembered.


You may read the entire post on AlzAuthors.com by clicking here.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Garland Creighton Provides a Transparent Glimpse Into Fears and Triumphs of Alzheimer’s Caregiving

I'm so thankful to have encountered Garland Creighton and his memoir of caregiving for both parents. AlzAuthors features Coming Alongside this week.

Garland writes: 

Caregiving is not a spectator sport, you have to roll up your sleeves and get dirty - - - which is why I wrote Coming Alongside. It’s a transparent, engaging, and humorous glimpse into the joy, trials, and triumphs of life as a caregiver. The book provides perspective for the uninitiated and a front row seat for the unfamiliar.

You may read the entire post here


Saturday, January 23, 2021

You'll love LaBena Fleming’s Touching Memoir, I Love You Always

I'm so thrilled to find this lovely book by a Cleveland, Ohio author, LaBena Fleming; I Love You AlwaysIf you are a daughter caring for a mother, this is a detailed look at the progression of Alzheimer's and also gives honest insights into the emotions of the daughter-caregiver. I'm so pleased to meet you, LaBena. 

LaBena writes: 
My book tells the story of a woman who, although diagnosed with dementia, was determined to live until the age of ninety.  It is also a love story, showing what we can accomplish when we step outside of ourselves and work together for what’s in the best interest of our loved ones.  It serves as a resource, sharing valuable caregiver tips as well as other practical lessons learned along the way.  In addition, it is a message of faith.  I can’t imagine any journey that is more harrowing than that of dementia, and I don’t know how people navigate their way through it without a strong anchor.  My anchor was God.  Words of encouragement, faith, and hope are dispersed throughout the book by the inclusion of favored scriptures.

You may read the entire post here.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Welcome Pat MacEnulty, author of Wait Until Tomorrow

Dear Friends, 

I found Pat MacEnulty's lovely book recently when searching the top 100 books in Alzheimer's and dementia on Amazon. After coming to know Pat through some exchanged emails, she agreed to write a post for AlzAuthors about her new memoir Wait Until Tomorrow.

 

Pat shares: 
When my mother could no longer live on her own, I took her away from the fulfilling life she loved and brought her to live in a facility near me. It was heartbreaking for both of us. Seeing her bright light flicker and fade, listening to her groan in pain as she tried to walk, and sensing her confusion when she forgot where she was depleted my spirit. My outlet was writing.

Please read the entire post here

Thank you, Pat, for writing this beautiful book and sharing it with others currently on the path, caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's or other dementia diseases.

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Kathy Flora Writes a New Memoir About Caring for Her Mother Called "Walking Momma Home"

While searching the top 100 books in Alzheimer's on Amazon recently, I found Kathy Flora, author of Walking My Momma Home: Finding Love, Grace and Acceptance Through the Labyrinth of Dementia.

I reached out to Kathy and she agreed to write a post for AlzAuthors. During our conversations, I learned more about her story. What stands out in my mind is that while recovering from illness, working full time, and balancing her own family life, Kathy completed a series of moves for her mother's well-being and eventually found peace in their journey. She shares her story with you.


Kathy writes: 

Walking My Momma Home is a memoir of my mom and me. It is about love, hope, uncertainty, role reversal, courage, and the raw humanity in Mom’s experience of losing herself to this disease. And it is about the hard decisions, conflicts, relationship balancing, and soul-stretching that being her caregiver required. Our story is one of love and laughter, tears and terrors, of opening hearts, and deep emotional healing. Finally, it is a story of God’s loving patience as He guided me to grow into the woman He intends me to be through caring for my mom.


Please read the entire post here.


Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Robin Thomson Writes About Caregiving for His Wife in His New Memoir, Living With Alzheimer's: A Love Story,

 I was drawn to Living With Alzheimer's:  A Love Story by its beautiful cover. Robin Thompson, the author, agreed to write a featured post for AlzAuthors. This book is well worth the read if you are a spouse caregiver. 


 

Robin shares: 

I wanted to tell our story as openly and honestly as possible, hoping that it could be helpful to other caregivers, families and friends, sharing the same pain and pressure, as well as the hope and resources. It’s difficult to convey the sense of bewilderment and sometimes hopelessness that you feel when caring for a person living with Alzheimer's, without appearing negative or self-pitying. But on the other side, the most remarkable thing for me was my experience of Shoko’s love and affection, even when her understanding was becoming more and more confused.

Please read the entire post here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Family Doctor, Sally Willard Burbank, Cowrites The Alzheimer's Disease Caregiver's Handbook, with Sue Pace Bell, a Spouse-Caregiver

Even though it's been a decade since my parents died of Alzheimer's, I still have a thirst to read about the disease and its impact on loved ones. Each time I reach out to an author, I feel like I make a new friend; someone who understands. I come to know someone who has shared some part of my journey. AlzAuthors.com was built from that desire. 

I found this beautiful book floating in the top 100 on Amazon. Wow, it's worth the read! A family doctor writes this helpful book chapter by chapter with the wife of an Alzheimer's patient. We see the medical side and the spouse-caregiver perspective. Very unique! So, this week AlzAuthors welcomes Dr. Sally Willard Burbank, author of  The Alzheimer's Disease Caregiver's Handbook; What to Remember When They Forget.

 


 

Sally shares: 

As a primary care internist with thirty years of experience, I noticed that, hands down, THE most stressed out and worn-out patients in my practice were those who were caregiving parents or spouses with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. They came in sleep-deprived and overwhelmed, always second-guessing themselves for how they were handling things. Some had come to near blows with siblings on thorny decisions. They are usually racked with guilt because they lose their patience with their loved one when they don’t remember what they are told or repeat the same question or story over and over the again.

Please read the entire post here.