You ask, Gerda & 4 dementia buddies tell “Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Living with Dementia”
As I mentioned in my previous blog post, in June, 2021, AlzAuthors hosted five of us who are currently living with dementia to a virtual discussion where we shared our stories. That is where I first had “live” communication with my dementia buddies Peter Berry, Jennifer Bute, and Wendy Mitchell from the UK and Michael Ellenbogen from the US. It was titled Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Living with Dementia but were afraid to ask. WATCH IT HERE.
News: AlzAuthors has arranged Part II, a second FREE Zoom get-together!
When: September 1st, 2023, at 10:30 am Eastern Standard Time (8:30 am Mountain Time)
Join: Sign up HERE . It will be lovely to see you there!
What: Update: what’s happened since, how we now cope with our conditions, manage to keep active and vital, maintain a positive attitude, and anything else you want to know.
Who: Meet our Moderators
Marianne Sciucco, author of Blue Hydrangeas, an Alzheimer’s love story. Marianne is a co-founder of AlzAuthors, manager, director, podcast host and producer, and acquisitions editor. Learn more about Marianne here.
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Christy Byrne Yates, author of Building a Legacy of Love: Thriving in the Sandwich Generation. Christy is a podcast host and producer, and manager of our YouTube channel. Learn more about Christy here.
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More Who: Meet the Panelists, the same 5 who met two-years-ago
Peter Berry ran the family’s timber business for decades before being diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at age 50. He immediately stopped working and fell into a deep depression. After some time, he realized that he still had a life to live, overcame his depression, and now fills his days with cycling across the English countryside with his friends, and advocating for those with dementia in his community and on social media. To date he has raised more than £20,000 for dementia charities through cycling challenges. He tells his story in Slow Puncture: Living Well with Dementia, with Deb Bunt. His second book, Walk with Me: Musings Through the Dementia Fog, also with Deb Bunt, was published in December 2021. Read more about Peter here, here, and here. Listen to our podcast with Peter.
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Jennifer Bute, FRCGP worked in Africa as a doctor before working as a GP (Family Doctor) in England for 25 years and was involved in medical education. Diagnosed with dementia more than ten years ago, she speaks at conferences and on radio and has been involved in television programs raising awareness and understanding of dementia. She passionately believes more can be done to improve both the present and the future for those living with these conditions. She is the author of Dementia from the Inside: A Doctor’s Personal Journey of Hope. Her website GloriousOpportunity.org includes videos where she discusses different aspects of the condition, and she also blogs on Facebook at Glorious Opportunity. Read more about Jennifer here and here. Listen to our podcastwith Jennifer.
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Michael Ellenbogen was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 49, after experiencing symptoms for 10 years. This led to an early retirement from his career in information technology. Following his diagnosis, he has become an outspoken advocate for those with dementia and has written articles and blog posts in addition to his book, From the Corner Office to Alzheimer’s. He has appeared on podcasts and television and has testified before the United States Congress. Read more about Michael here and here. Listen to our podcast with Michael.
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Wendy Mitchell started a blog, Which Me Am I Today? after being diagnosed with young-onset Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia in 2014. She was 58. Her blog eventually became a memoir, Somebody I Used to Know. Her second book, What I Wish People Knew About Dementia: From Someone Who Knows, was published in early 2022, and her third (and final, she says) book, One Last Thing: How to live with the end in mind, was released this past June. Wendy is active in the dementia community, participating in workshops and lectures across England. She has a very active Twitter presence, which she calls her lifeline. Read more about Wendy here, here and here. Listen to our podcast with Wendy.
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Gerda Saunders was the Associate Director of and taught in the Gender Studies Program at the University of Utah; she also taught gender and literature courses in the English Department. At the age of 61, she was diagnosed with cerebral microvascular disease, a precursor to dementia. She retired a year later. She maintains an active lifestyle, writing and speaking about the disease in a variety of settings. She is the author of Memory’s Last Breath: Field Notes on My Dementia, and blogs at My Life with Dementia. Her story was featured in a PBS Utah documentary, The Gerda that Remains, available here. Read more about Gerda here. Listen to our podcast with Gerda.
Byron Brown, The Night Journey, 1947. The dementia journey is so much better when you know you are not alone. Whether you have a loved one with dementia or are just curious, please sign up for the event above and ask us your questions. It will strengthen our sense that there is a larger community out there who care for and about us.