“Alzheimer’s: Embracing the Humor” was written after living many years with two parents with Dementia. Something was always up in my household and more times than not, it was poignant or ironic or just funny. I always had a camera on me and while many of the photos are not technically perfect, they capture some essence that lead me to write a short story about the incident. More than an autobiographical wonderland, I hoped that these stories would describe a disease in ways that a doctor or clergy could not.
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I did an exhibit at the California Center for the Arts, Escondido within in the group show of Public Address called 'DeEscondido'. I made an interactive display of aspects regarding how Alzheimer's patients moving into memory care, sort of the next step after the book. This included a questions box. I was startled to see how many questions the average museum goer had about an illness. Andrea Villa and I held a free book reading and talk as a special event during the exhibition .
Currently I am offering a class that supports the family members of someone with dementia. Not so much about my book, but rather creating a book of family memorabilia that is used as a communication aide. I have found that with my mother, as her verbal abilities wane, I can always pull out one of the many books I have made for her, and we have something to talk about, marvel at, laugh about. I mean, you can’t even ask someone with short recall, how their day is going and get a reasonable answer. This inability to communicate keeps folks from visiting their loved ones, and that creates a sadder world.
See Classes section for more info HERE. The class teaches through conversation, ways to talk, best ways to walk, how to connect with the staff in a facility, and of course, how to put together a life-book. It takes all day, includes lunch and I have connections with local bed and breakfast facilities close by in case of need. It's a retreat with a love-purpose.
Alzheimer's Embracing the Humor
5 x 7 softbound book 75 pages Short stories with images