I Will Never Forget: A Daughter’s Story of Her Mother’s Arduous and Humorous Journey through Dementia is a true book about patients of dementia and the families that love them.
Dementia comes in many forms with Alzheimer’s being one of the more known. We often hear of the clinical issues of dementia, and sometimes the difficulties. In this book, Elaine Pereina tells of her travels through this difficult time with her own mother, giving us a very intimate side, often emotional, sometimes humorous, and always very personal.
Reading her story, I felt as though I knew the author’s family. I could see her petite, but sprightly Mom show her concern for family, even as she was dealing with memory loss and confusion. Pereina was able to show emotional attachments between the family and walk the reader through the life moments.
I found myself relating well to the situations and emotions that Pereina described. My grandmother had some similar experiences with Alzheimer’s several years ago. With no road map, my parents and the rest of our family stumbled through her last few years. Like Pereina, we found ourselves looking back at seemingly small events that were most likely early indicators of dementia.
Pereina weaves these early indicators with current times, a process that is quite fitting but one that I found a little distracting at times. I found myself wanting to read through her current journey, but sometimes being taken back many years. Although distracting, it allowed insight that might have otherwise be missed.
Dementia is indeed a difficult disease that takes our loved ones one step at a time. I remember feeling like my Grandma was leaving, over and over. Pereina describes this from a daughter’s viewpoint in a way that helps the reader understand the difficulties and the warm moments of caring for a loved one with dementia. She also intertwines useful information for those currently caring for a dementia patient.
I Will Never Forget is a warm, emotional story that I would recommend for anyone, but especially for those caring for a loved one with dementia. Reading Elaine’s story will give you an appreciation and understanding that pure medical knowledge cannot.