Sunday, May 11, 2014

The Geography of Memory - Jeanne Murray Walker

Subtitle: A Pilgrimage through Alzheimer's

This book is a memoir of the author's experience with her mother at the end of life.  She is one of two sisters, living in Delaware while her sister and mother are in Dallas, Texas.  It was hard to read her perspective at times when I thought of her sister who was with her mother all the time, while the author flew in to visit or telephoned.  The tension of carrying for a parent long distance was plain and the negotiations between siblings honest.  There are insights into the function of memory and the author explains a belief that Alzheimer's patients and others with dementia are not making meaningless babblings but instead are using metaphor to bring their past to the present.  There was an honoring of her mother and her ability to retain her dignity and personality despite the progression of the disease, a message we all need to embrace.

Published:  2013  Read: May 2014  Genre: Memoir

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