Coping with a father’s dementia: Local author to tell her story in Wiscasset Library Talk

Mon, 11/05/2018 - 8:15am

Local author Lisa Steele-Maley will discuss her recently published book “Without a Map: A Caregivers Journey Through the Wilderness of Heart and Mind” in a talk Wednesday, Nov. 14, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Wiscasset Public Library, 21 High St.

The book tells movingly of her five years of dealing with her father’s increasing dementia until his death in December 2016. The book was published in June 2018.

She will read from the book and take questions from the audience. The book will be for sale and she will sign copies of it.

As an accomplished wilderness traveler for years in remote areas including in Washington and Alaska, she was accustomed to dealing with ever-changing situations, but as her father’s health declined she found it difficult to cope with the changes in his behavior.

Only one thing was sure, she writes: her father was losing perspective—losing track of time, the slippers at his feet, and his ability to find his way home.

She wasn’t sure she had the skills, experience, or patience to competently care for him as his health deteriorated, but taking one step at a time, she did it and learned a lot about herself and life in the process.

For anyone dealing with dementia and aging, her talk will give insight into ways to be a compassionate caregiver to a loved family member suffering a tragic, but all too common, illness.

Steele-Maley lives in an aging farmhouse in Edgecomb with her husband, two teenage sons and a handful of animals. She is a chaplaincy student at an interfaith ministry program and a board member at Renewal in the Wilderness.

For more on the upcoming talk, call 882-7060. The talk is free to the public and light refreshments will be served.