Behind The Mask

Behind The Mask was written as a secret journal when my husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease in 1993. We wre strongly advised to keep this diagnosis a secret so he could keep his consulting jobs and his position on the Board Of Directors at Toys R Us.

I had no one to talk to; I didn’t want to burden my children, as they had small children of their own. I started a secret journal on my computer and knew that no one would ever see it.

Seven years later the doctor changed his diagnosis to Age Associated Memory Impairment. I don’t think anyone knew what was going on during those seven years. Howard and I thought Alzheimer’s was really happening.

I was frightened, angry, alone, depressed and worried. I was going to lose the man I loved even though he would still look like Howard, walk like Howard, his voice would be Howard’s and yet the one thing he prized the most, his mind would be gone.

I tried to smile and keep my fears away from him; he had his own fears and rightfully so.

When I was sure that Alzheimer’s wasn’t going to happen, I showed Howard my journal. With tears in his eyes he said, “This is beautiful, it’s you, it’s our love story and maybe it will help someone else. Publish it.”

It took me a long time but I finally said to myself why not. If reading my story and standing in my shoes for a few hours would help someone I was all for doing it. I self published the book last year, and I am still getting comments that make me cry.

After hearing some of these comments, I realized that I could do more. And so I started my Adopt A Caregiver journey. It starts in your own community, there is always a caregiver who feels alone and depressed, someone who needs a friend.

All it takes is an email. A few minutes of your time to help support someone who badly needs someone to talk to.

Give the gift that lasts forever and costs nothing. Adopt A Caregiver and tell them your friend Helene sent you.

Keep love and kisses in your life. Helene.