Feb 222018
You Will Get Wet on This Ride

I washed Mom’s hair today. What a mess! For some reason, Mom, like many people living with Alzheimer’s, does not enjoy bathing or showering. Perhaps it is the overwhelming number of tasks associated with morning rituals that someone with Alzheimer’s can no longer remember how to do or what order to proceed in. I imagine Mom has a blank space in her memory when she’s asked to wash. And not being able to do it […]

Jan 022018
Rewriting Memories: Film Veteran Lois Smith Creates Oscar Buzz with “Marjorie Prime”

Actress Lois Smith’s face is one film buffs instantly recognize. Whether it’s a standout performance in a television series (“The Americans,” “True Blood”) or a memorable turn in a major motion picture (“Minority Report,” “Twister,” “East of Eden”), hers is a talent that has endured over six decades. But one wouldn’t guess that Smith recently celebrated her 87th birthday, or that she would post her first tweet that same day. She keeps people on their […]

Dec 152017
At a Crossroads During Chanukah

We are at a crossroads. Should we give Mom anti-psychotic medication to combat her hostility and irrational behavior (i.e., hallucinations, delusions, aggression, agitation), thereby knowingly accepting possible side effects of these drugs? Or should we continue to shepherd Mom through her heartbreaking performances and embrace her anger? Mom is regressing into a world of incoherence and fantasy. She experiences what my dad calls psychotic episodes between periods of greater clarity with lack of cognition and […]

Oct 272017
10 Ways to Help a Family Living with Alzheimer's

In the United States alone, there are more than 15 million Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers. During National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness & Family Caregivers Month, we honor the people who serve as care partners and caregivers by providing tips for those looking to support these families living with the disease. Whether you are seeking to support a person with Alzheimer’s or the person that cares for him or her, you will find helpful ways to lend a hand […]

Sep 272017
Shared Genes

There is no escaping the similarities between us. Mom and I look alike. We dress alike. (We both wore blue dresses on Rosh Hashanah, and on Sunday, we were wearing black skirts and white t-shirts, definitely unintentional on my part.) We walk alike. And our voices are somewhat similar, too, despite my American versus her British accent. I am reminded of these facts every time we are together. It is not something I can avoid: it is genetically determined. I keep […]

Sep 202017
My First Memory of Teamwork: A Former NFL Player Walks to End Alzheimer’s for His Grandfather

I learned about the concept of teamwork from my grandfather when I started playing youth football in 1992. That year our team was awful, both on the offensive and defensive lines; we went winless the entire season. This made me miserable. I was the biggest and fastest kid on the team but wasn’t even playing in a featured position. My granddad went to every single one of my games, as he lived just five minutes […]

Aug 142017
Caregiver Wife Increases Her Walk to End Alzheimer’s Team Goal to $20,000

Amazing how a simple three-letter word provides an instant impact to Charlotte Jackson’s quest to help end Alzheimer’s. Ask. “The worst they can say is no,” Charlotte says of her simple strategy to build a bigger support group. “I learned how to ask at the very beginning, and so many people have come through for me.” Charlotte’s husband Bill – today “a young 70,” Charlotte says – was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2008. In 2012, […]

Jul 182017
A Moving Experience

There are boxes stacked neatly in my parents’ apartment, evidence that they are truly going through with their move in two months to Beer Sheva. There’s so much left to pack—a life’s collection—that I suggested that my dad start early and work in short shifts. And with another heat wave gripping Israel, today during my visit, we decided to stay inside and clear out some of the cupboards. Our rule of thumb: if an item […]

Jun 132017
A Proud Father with Alzheimer’s Walks His Daughter Down the Aisle

The fact that my dad even knows who Matt is feels quite incredible. My dad was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease 11 years ago, and my husband Matt came into our lives just three years ago. What makes my heart soar is how they’ve become best buddies. My dad still lives at home with my mom, his soulmate turned full-time caregiver. While he cannot be left alone, dress himself, buckle his seatbelt, or even open […]

Jun 022017
Facing the Music: Kim Campbell Talks Alzheimer’s, Caregiving and Disco Meets Country

My husband, country music star Glen Campbell, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2011. In 2014, the documentary film “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me” shared Glen’s 151-concert “Goodbye Tour” with millions of people. It was empowering to share our family’s story with the world, but it was just the beginning of our continuing journey with this devastating disease. Throughout his life, Glen demonstrated how the power of love, laughter, friendship, faith and music helped him overcome […]

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