Massachusetts Journalist With Alzheimer’s Discusses Life’s Challenges in Podcast

Massachusetts Journalist With Alzheimer’s Discusses Life’s Challenges in Podcast
All his life, Greg O’Brien has had a front-row seat for Alzheimer’s disease. Growing up on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, he was the caregiver in a family of 10 children for his mother. His maternal grandfather and paternal uncle had Alzheimer’s, and his father was diagnosed with dementia and had prostate cancer. Years later, in 2009, a serious head injury unmasked the disease for O’Brien, who learned at age 59 he had early-onset Alzheimer’s. Just two weeks earlier, he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, which he chose not to treat. A veteran print journalist, O’Brien turned to writing — both as a strategy for coping with memory loss in daily life, and as a way to help others understand the disease. T
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2 comments

  1. Jay Halpern says:

    I retired last spring from teaching college English when I began to experience word search problems and other memory/false memory events. One example occurred one evening after I left a gathering that supported DACA folks and couldn’t find my car. A very wonderful cop saw me hunting around in the dark and came to help. I could swear that my car was parked in a very small garage, and I couldn’t find that garage. He drove me to the nearest garage and suggested I look in there. I was skeptical because the garage was large and well-lighted, nothing that I remembered. To appease the officer I got out and walked up the sloped driveway. Sure as shit, there was my car… A false memory of a garage I had used about a month before had taken over. My wife and I went to a neurologist and I got the Alzheimer’s diagnosis. (I had to ask my wife to remind me of the word “diagnosis” just now as I’m typing.) I’m a published novelist, a passionate reader and student of literature of the highest level (James Joyce, Proust, etc)so, yes, I am learning to pursue more literary challenges as well as embarking into the world of calculus, physics and a variety of other interests that have been embedded my mind throughout my 67 years. I have learned to accept what I have to accept, laugh at my mistakes, and wear the strongest armor I can conceive when I suddenly remember the dark monster I’m slowly walking toward that’s awaiting me in a sunless, dying forest. I consider myself a warrior against the inevitable who will go down fighting, leaving behind as much wondrous ideas, projects and love of my beloved wife, my pets, my friends and the rest of humanity for whom I have marched and fought against those who have tried to turn freedom into slavery, truth into lies, and hope into despair.

  2. William Glasser says:

    Brain Health Acupuncture in Beverly Hills has been getting excellent results with Brain related problems such as CTE and Alzheimer’s. They may be the best kept secret amongst pro NHL players at the moment but I would encourage anyone with symptoms to check them out.

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