People often ask why I wrote Here We Go Joe, a book about Joe’s struggle with dementia. You see Joe wasn’t my father. He was my husband’s father. So why do I have the right to compose my story regarding a man that wasn’t my flesh and blood? Because, even though Joe wasn’t my father, he was family.
I struggled with my relationship with my own father. There was a lot of baggage between us. Baggage that wouldn’t be picked up and packed away until after his death.
So once my own father had passed from this life, my husband, his sister and I were placed on a twisty road of decisions that had to be made without a guidebook to instruct us on how to proceed. As I reflect on the decisions made on Joe’s behalf, some miss steps were taken, but overall, he was treated with compassion and respect.
As a daughter-in-law, Joe and I didn’t have the personal baggage that comes between a parent and child. We met as adults, and with that, we developed a genuine respect for one another. Which was invaluable when it came time to make the decisions no child wants to make for their parent.
In our story, my husband, his sister, and I all had a role to play. Roles that might have been muddled at times, but made as a family.
Bottom line. God put this story on my heart. A story that I believed the Spirit put in my mind to write for others who have a loved one suffering from dementia. So, if you, as a caregiver, are struggling with a strong sense of despair, this book is for you. Let this story, Here We Go Joe, walk alongside you, and bring you peace that comes from knowing you are not alone.