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, September 18, 2019

I Never Expected This

I never expected to become the caregiver for my parents, I never expected to write a book, and I certainly never expected to have that book made into an audiobook.

But, in the eight years since my retirement from teaching 3rd graders, I have written not only one book, but now four, all based on family. (The most recent being a children's series written through the voice of my grandchildren's pets). My first book, Alzheimer's Daughter, remains a top seller on Amazon in the category of eldercare. 

Also unexpectedly, I have ventured into the world of audiobooks. I never even considered that my books could become anything but written words on paper or a Kindle device.

Spurred by my colleagues at AlzAuthors, I began to explore Amazon Audible. I uploaded a sample of Alzheimer's Daughter through their author platform, ACX. Audio auditions began to arrive. I received 20 auditions in all, from highly capable voice actors. 

Karen Merritt's audition stood out, honestly because she told me she'd read my entire book before she auditioned and felt deeply connected to my story.

We spoke by phone so she could understand my parents' personalities and my own, and she began her magical work.

Within a period of about six weeks, we released the Audible version of Alzheimer's Daughter.

But most unexpectedly, I had the opportunity to meet Karen Merritt for lunch recently. She lives near Pittsburg and I near Cleveland. So, we drove halfway to a diner that had the same aroma of frying bacon and burgers as the small-town Farmer's Restaurant where my parents ate many a meal in my book. 

Oh, the joy and connection radiating from our meeting; Karen is a part of my story now as she narrates the voices of Ed, Ibby, my sister, and me.

A curious gentleman at a nearby table couldn't help but recognize our deep emotion and he offered to take this picture. 

I'm forever thankful for Karen blessing my life with the tenderness and love she poured into this project.

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