Finding Joy in Alzheimer’s: New Hope for Caregivers
By Marie Marley, PhD, and Neurologist Daniel C. Potts, MD, FAAN
November 2015 – Joseph Peterson Books
This book, available in paperback and Kindle version on Amazon, has the following Foreword, written by Maria Shriver, whose father, Sargent Shriver, had the illness:
“Alzheimer’s” and “hope” aren’t usually words people put into the same sentence. It’s a disease which at this moment – November 2015 – has no cure. But there is a lot of hope. Marie Marley and Daniel Potts have managed to find light in the midst of the darkness that can prevail while caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s.
Unlike most books on the topic, which focus on the difficulties of caring for those with the illness, Finding Joy in Alzheimer’s: New Hope for Caregivers shines a light on the uplifting and inspiring moments you can experience and share while caring for someone and navigating this mind-blowing disease.
This groundbreaking volume, written by two former caregivers, will show those still dealing with this disease day in and day out how to come to terms with their loved one’s condition so that they can free their mind and heart to embrace and enjoy the time they spend together. As a child of Alzheimer’s – my father, Sargent Shriver, died of the disease in 2011 – I know first-hand how important it is to find moments of grace and joy even while the person you love is losing control of his or her own mind.
Marie and Daniel smartly divided this book into three parts, which will show you how people living with Alzheimer’s can still enjoy life, give insight into overcoming the devil called “denial,” letting go of resentment and the role grief plays on our journey to acceptance. As everyone associated with Alzheimer’s must eventually accept, in order to move forward with the person your loved one has become, you must acknowledge and grieve the person they used to be. Grief is something I still experience over the loss of my father. He had the brightest mind I’ve ever encountered, but while we were living with his disease, I learned how to enjoy the new person he was becoming and was able to have interactions I’ll treasure for the rest of my life.
Between tips on how to interact and visit with people with dementia and stories from their personal experiences, the guidance and real-life tools offered in these pages will provide immeasurable support for the oh-so-important caretakers who themselves are offering everyday support on what I call “the front lines of humanity.”
I have hope that we will one day find a cure and wipe out Alzheimer’s. But, until then, it is books like this, offering hope, guidance and community that will help us all to navigate the ever-shifting tides that accompany an Alzheimer’s diagnosis – for the patients, families and caretakers. Hats off to Marie and Daniel for tackling this much-needed topic.