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Posted December 31, 2012
Reviewed by Debra Gaynor for Readers Favorite
Dr. Robert Rose shares his most challenging role in life, that of a caregiver. Robert and Marie Rose had been married almost forty years when they heard the diagnosis. Marie had scored 18 out of 30 on the test administered by the neurologist; anything under 25 was considered a good indicator of dementia. Robert had suddenly taken on the role of caregiver and advocate; he spent much time on research and for reading numerous articles on diagnosis, medications, the various stages of the disease and the needs of the caregiver. Rose was a retired educator and was thought of as a celebrity in his district for working with at-risk children. It was Rose’s dream to be a full time writer but with Marie’s illness he knew he would need to supplement his pension. The local school system was eager to have the experienced and successful Dr. Robert Rose as a substitute. Eventually he returned full time to the class room. In his heart he blamed Marie for their money woes. 'Take care of yourself' is the major theme in this book. As a caregiver you cannot take care of someone else if you are stressed, ill, and so on. Rose encourages readers to learn their own triggers, the things that stress them out or cause them to get angry. If you are a caregiver for a loved one with dementia or memory problems you must learn to practice patience, to be an encourager, to understand your loved one’s fears, and to be their advocate.
Dr. Robert Rose is blunt and honest in this book. He shares his story and much of Marie’s. In his honesty Rose is critical of himself. This is not a 'pat me on the back' book. It is an honest look at life through the eyes of a caregiver. Some of us seem to be born caregivers. Are we searching for someone to take care of or do they sense our caregiving gift and gravitate toward us?