Friday, June 12, 2009

Still Alice

I finished reading Still Alice the other day. It took some time for it to sink in before I decided to write about it, it was a really touching story that hit a little close to home. Lisa Genova did an incredible job at portraying a woman with early-onset Alzheimer's.

My grandmother suffered for many years with Alzheimer's. She was not young when it started, not that we knew, anyway. Sadly, and honestly, I couldn't say how old she was when it began. I can, however, tell you that I was about 10. Or was it 13? I think it was 10, and that she suffered for 13 years. Or we all did.

This story was incredible in that somehow she was able to create the mind of a woman dealing with changes in her mind, and put it all on paper. I turned page after page, reeling with emotions, felt my stomach tied up in knots. I was frustrated, over-joyed, angry and sad. I watched as her husband was shocked, supportive, shut down and pulled away over the course of time.


I listened as she, herself, tried to remember dates and places, names and faces, and basically fell into an underwater world, where conversations floated around her and she fell behind, often completely lost. Sometimes not even knowing it.


The nice man took her home. That man was her husband.


The actress in the play. She asked, 'Will we see you in anything else this summer?' How quickly she forgot rehearsing lines with her daughter.


The mother. Her own daughter. Who tested positive for the gene of some sort. The gene that would possibly lead, could possibly lead to her own memory loss and dementia as time moved on.


How many lives are touched by this horrible disease? I'm sure that we can never truly know. But for anyone curious, just interested in a taste of the way that lives are completely changed, pick up a copy of this book. It's a well written story. You'll be touched.

2 comments:

gwen6179 said...

Andrea have you seen Forget Me Never or the Notebook. Great movies.

Andrea (ace1028) said...

I haven't. I do have a copy of The Notebook on DVD that I borrowed from my bro/SIL when I was pregnant! :O I'll get to it eventually.

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