Mam an' Me: Living a Lifetime in a Day / Kieran J. Coote

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In Mam an’ Me, author Kieran Coote draws together, in a beautifully lyrical way, an ordinary day spent caring for his mother with remembrances of times past, and the lively, vivacious woman she was before her diagnosis of dementia.

Alternating between the need to be present in the ‘now’, as he cares for his mother’s needs over a single day, and the story of her life, Kieran creates a timeless record of how the paths of their lives are bound together more tightly than ever before, by love, duty and choice.

Mam an’ Me is a record, in the simplest way, of what a day is like for two people bound by love and the terrible illness of Alzheimer’s disease/dementia. To speak about the frustration and the enlightenment that goes hand-in-hand on any given day. To show the level of care that is required when your good intentions need to be turned into good actions. To express the gratitude to all the people close and not so close who come forward to help and assist in so many ways.

As the author notes in his preface, ‘I know that we are not the first or only people, bound together on this path of duty, choice and love. I write now for all those who have gone before us on this journey, and for the wisdom and kindness they have imparted to Mam and me along the way. I write also, in solidarity, for all the fellow souls who find themselves, in this moment, bound on a similar pathway.

And finally, I record our experience for any fellow travellers who may one day find themselves in a comparable situation, and are filled with questions, uncertainties, and a myriad of not so clear choices.