With growing numbers the White Hair generation seems to be on course for something
that most people that age won't like to talk about. Almost 40 per cent of people
over the age of 65 will experience some form of memory loss. When there is no underlying
medical condition causing this memory loss, it is known as "age-associated memory
impairment," which is considered a part of the normal aging process.
Brain diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias are different. Age-associated
memory impairment and dementia can be told apart in a number of ways. With normal
aging many people experience difficulty remembering details of a conversation or
events that took place in the past, or not being able to remember the name of an
acquaintance, forgetting things and the occasional event, or having difficulty finding
words during a conversation.
With dementia many people experience difficulty recalling details of recent events
or conversations, not recognizing or knowing the names of family members, forgetting
things or events more frequently, and frequent pauses and substitutions when finding
words during conversations. Behaviour of loved ones can change over time so drastically
that safety concerns to deal with the increasing anger and paranoia must be developed.
Dementia is a subject that doesn't get told very often from a real life experience.
Elizabeth Murray author of Holding on to Mamie: My Mother, Dementia and Me
shares her story of a mother's battle with dementia and a daughter who struggles
to recognize and understand the symptoms of the disease and to finally cope with
the many ongoing challenges of caring for a loved one.
Sharing her experience may also help others understand the confusion, guilt, and
even shame that may arise when they are confronted with their own battle against
dementia. Hopefully sharing stories will also help to normalize the disease and
reduce the stigma that still exists for many people who are afflicted with the disease.
After reading Holding on to Mamie: My Mother, Dementia and Me by Elizabeth Murray
I felt that the author did an amazing job of bringing out the struggle, challenges,
and effects to family and friends that dementia can have. I can only feel sad for the
pain that this disease has caused, and respect to the woman that had the courage
and determination to tell her story. Thank You Elizabeth Murray!
Elizabeth Murray will be exhibiting Holding on to Mamie: My Mother, Dementia and
Me on Thursday, April 19th, 2018 at the 50+ Living and Learning Expo in
St. Thomas and she will also be speaking on Saturday, April 21st, 2018 at 2:00 at the Kaleidoscope
Cottage, 204 Balaclava Street, St. Thomas, ON, an innovative respite centre for
The book is available to purchase online atholdingontomamie.ca
Alzheimer Society of Canada