Tuesday, June 9, 2015

A Night at the Tattered Cover

On June 1st, 2015 I addressed an audience of forty plus family, friends and individuals interested in the subject of eldercare at the Tattered Cover on Colfax in Denver, Colorado.  The subject was my new book, The Takeover: An Unexpected Caregiver's Story which chronicles the offbeat and upbeat experiences of moving my parents from Chicago to Denver at the ages of 90 and 95 and then supervising their care.

First I talked about the circumstances that led me to move my parents at their advanced ages.  This was followed by some of the roller coaster rides that I experienced, the issues that I was faced with, and the takeaways of what I learned. In between these discussion points, I read a few excerpts from the book.

To back up my personal story and make me look more “legitimate,” I had asked Rosanne Collison, owner of Kinsman Care, a geriatric care management company to follow me and summarize some of the most important parts of caregiving.  Whereas I talked about incontinence, falls and ER visits, Rosanne explained the hot spots to identify when a caregiver is in need of relief:  resentment, anger, guilt, weight gain.

Afterwards, lots of books were signed and lots of comments were made.  Amazingly, even since the book came out at the end of October, the reactions are always fresh and revealing.

One woman asked me who I thought made the best nurturer.  Was it a man or a woman?  Which sibling might be better suited?

A single man of 70 wanted to know if I had any suggestions on where to go to look for senior housing.

The subject of "quality of life' was mentioned by another person attending.

Another lady came up and said that the idea of having an adventure in old age such as my mom and dad had when they moved to Denver inspired her to not be afraid of change regardless of one's age.

To see so many people open up about a subject no one wants to discuss gave me solace that we can make the growing old thing more comfortable and more user friendly.  That’s my hope and I’ve made a vow to myself to keep working at it.

What a great night!