“The 36-Hour Day”—Book review

Everybody knows somebody with Alzheimer’s, right?

'The 36-Hour Day' by Mace and RabinsIf not in your immediate bloodline, there’s a great aunt or close family friend that has it.

My mom has had it since her early sixties.

Even though I knew it, I didn’t like reading about it. There was nothing I could do about it except watch it. Watch her. Go in one direction only. I didn’t even want to think about it.

But I had to then, and I definitely have to now.

When my dad started getting sick last fall, I started thinking about it even more. He had been her primary caregiver, and had plans to continue until it took her life.

It didn’t work that way. He left first.

So last month, as my siblings and I stepped up into the role of primary caregivers, I’ve finally stepped up into more actively learning about Alzheimer’s. 

I should have done it sooner, I know.
Because there is more you can do than just watch.

You can learn how to handle problems in daily activities; how to make living areas safer; how to actively prepare for what’s coming next; how to care for yourself as you care for your loved one.

The 36-Hour Day is one of the classics for teaching these things. It has 18 chapters that touch on everything I could think of, and then some. Rachel’s mom gave me her copy, and I’ve already passed it on to Mona, whose mom is now on this journey. 

Maybe you don’t need it now. Or maybe you never will. I pray you don’t. But if someone you know does, give them a copy. The wealth of information contained in this book can help them cope through a difficult time.

* * *

A sampling of chapter titles

3. Characteristic Problems of Dementia
4. Problems in Independent Living
8. Problems of Mood
10. Getting Outside Help
12. How Caring for an Impaired Person Affects You
14. For Children and Teenagers
15. Financial and Legal Issues
16. Nursing Homes and Other Living Arrangements
18. Research in Dementia

3 comments:

elizabeth said...

My husband's mom has Alzheimer's...thank God she is in a fabulous Christian adult care home. It is a private home atmosphere with only 4 patients and the owner is so great with them. Mom in law is convinced the owner can't run the place without her and enjoys helping with things around the home...even some gardening!

Lisa notes... said...

Elizabeth,
How wonderful that you have found a great place for your m-i-l! We have been looking at different places for my mom. She would love to be able to "help" with gardening somewhere. But if I were her, I'd be thankful to NOT have to anymore. ha. She and my dad always had the biggest vegetable garden for years and years.
Blessings to you,
Lisa

~ linda said...

Lisa,
Thank you for visiting my site today ... which led me to meandering through yours ....
Because it is a lengthy book, I found it to be one that I skipped around in depending upon the symptom or sign or behavior that was current at this moment. It was within a section that helped me in a wider area of these mental changes.
This book has guided me in and over many a rough and rugged terrain of dementia that my 97 year old mother is traveling! It has given me the insights I need and helped me to know that I am not alone, that I can understand Mom a bit better, and that the mind can take odd turns at any given time. Some of the corners she has turned have disappeared and some have gotten worse. But I am thankful for this book. My husband's family read it first as Ken's father had Alzheimer's. I have bought both of my sisters a copy.
Thanks, ~ linda

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