Read a Book
By: Michelle Remold
One of my favorite past times is reading. I enjoy reading anything by John Steinbeck and have two lists of books I am trying to read my way through. During my undergrad however, I discovered a new literary area that I enjoyed reading. This area was made up of personal accounts from those who had first hand experiences with Alzheimer’s and dementia.
I have read non-fiction books before, but they haven’t really been anything that sparked my interest. Within the last couple of years however, I have found that reading personal accounts of Alzheimer’s and dementia are a strong interest area for me. It provides a glimpse into someone else’s experience with the disease.
Reading personal accounts provides the opportunity to find comfort in similarities of the disease and the differences increases my compassion for those dealing with the disease while increasing my knowledge. While I also enjoy reading books about Alzheimer’s and dementia based on research and theory, I find personal accounts to be more educational in their own right. Often they give insight to things about the diseases that aren’t discussed in everyday conversations. They address everything from tears shed to laughs shared to struggles and triumphs.
I think that personal accounts of Alzheimer’s and dementia make coping with the disease a little easier. They help reiterate that you are not alone in dealing with it and can provide the support and comfort that someone may need. While nothing can take the place of conversations, I believe that reading a book, on anything you may be trying to learn about, can be beneficial. In the case of caring for or working with individuals with Alzheimer’s and dementia, I think that knowledge is power and encourage everyone to read a book.
Michelle graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with her Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology: Social Sciences and a minor in Family Studies. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Aging Studies and Nursing Home Administration from Minnesota State University Mankato.