By Frena Gray-Davidson
Robert D. Reed Publishers, P. O. Box 1992, Bandon, Or 97411, 78-1934759141, $ 16.95, 2009, 192 pages
Reviewed by Richard R. Blake
Fresh Perspectives on Caring for Individuals with Dementia Behavior Patterns
Frena Gray-Davidson sheds light on the plight of anyone dealing with dementia and the devastating frustration and hopelessness that accompany the victims and caregivers impacted by the disease. In her book Alzheimer’s 911; Help, Hope, and Healing for the Caregiver, Davidson describes the behaviors of dementia in an effort to help the reader understand and interpret their own observations of a loved one with Alzheimer’s.
Davidson sheds fresh perspectives on caregiving, the importance of flexibility, developing patience, nurturing compassion, and living in the present moment. She uses humorous personal anecdotes, spiritual insights, and practical pointers to encourage and empower the reader to successfully navigate the uncharted course in their journey through Dementia. Each chapter ends with a feature called A Life in Alzheimer’s Land which provides a unique glimpse into the mind of the person with Dementia.
I now have a better understanding of the components of a support system, the need for interdependence on others: family, friends, the church, and the community.
I found the chapter titled Forgiveness and Acceptance especially helpful as it enabled me to look within myself to establish a new kind of relationship with my spouse; by recognizing the reality that I have a choice of accepting our situation or being trapped in a toxic attitude of pity and regret.
Alzheimer’s 911 is a must read for Dementia caregivers, family members and medical professionals. I plan to apply the principles, personally, add the book to my permanent library, make it available to my family members, and to re-read it often.