National Dementia Awareness Week

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Here in the UK it is ‘National Dementia Awareness Week” this week. Dementia is a subject very close to my heart after caring for my mum who had early onset dementia. I have seen what this illness can do to people and the affect it has on not only the people going through it, but the people around them as well.

It’s Important

There seems to be more and more special days and weeks to recognise something or other these days. I don’t think there is a day in the calendar, which isn’t a special day for something, somewhere in the world but I think this week is important.

Regular readers of my blog will know about my book I wrote about my time caring for my mum, called “Unbreakable Bond.”

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Unbreakable-Bond-Adam-Sibley-ebook/dp/B00UM6ATBW

The idea behind the book was to help raise awareness, which ties brilliantly in to the message of this week. I want to do my small bit to raise awareness, but I hope by doing my bit I encourage others to do the same. There isn’t enough awareness in this world of what life is really like for those affected by dementia and that is the type of awareness I want to help raise.

The human side

I believe the awareness of what dementia is, is already at a sky-high level. People are aware of how much of a problem it is for the modern world but I think we need more awareness of the human side behind it and not just the stats.

So this week I encourage you to actually take the time to talk to people who have been affected by dementia and take time to find out about their stories. People who have been through it will have a lot of insight to share, that will really put this illness and its effects in to perspective for you.

There are some amazing and special people in this world that have been affected by dementia and we as the human race need to do all we can to make sure that in the future less and less people are affected by dementia and not more.

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Timing

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Two years ago my mum passed away after a battle with Early Onset Dementia. In the final days I spent with her in hospital I made her a promise, a promise that I would write a book to share her life, our experiences and a book to help others around the world who may be facing similar battles.

Days after she passed I started work on this project and within 6 months I had a book I was happy with. Once I had it finished, I managed to find an amazing editor with a wealth of experience who turned our story that I had written in to a very readable book that I was beyond proud with. I then spent the last year trying to get a publisher to support the book. I talked to many people within the industry and got ever so close to getting the book to market through a publisher but sadly it didn’t work out.

This left me in a position of not knowing what to do. Did I keep on going, trying to find a publisher or did I get this book that I had a desire to share with the world out by some other means. After a lot of thinking yesterday I took the plunge and made it available to download in eBook form through amazon:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Unbreakable-Bond-Adam-Sibley-ebook/dp/B00UM6ATBW/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1426236586&sr=8-2&keywords=adam+sibley

That afternoon, after I had made it available to download I heard the news that world-renowned author Terry Pratchett had passed after his battle with Early Onset Dementia:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-31858156

Sometimes we do things in life without knowing why and it turns out to be a poignant and sobering moment and this was one of them.

Using what you’ve got

I will never have the money or knowledge that it will require to make the scientific developments that are needed to help us combat Alzheimer’s and Dementia but I have a heart for people and personal experience, which I think are the important things that I can bring to the battle.

I want to live in a world where there is better care for people with Alzheimer’s and Dementia whilst we wait for a cure. I want to live in the world where the general public has a better understanding for what people living with the illness are going through and know what they can do to help them. I want to live in a world where we support the people who care for friends and family members who are living with terrible illnesses. I want to live in a world where we are prepared and ready to care for others if and when the time comes.

A voice for the voiceless

Regardless of our situation and our battle we all deserve, care, support and love. There are so many people who have been robbed of their voice because of their illness, ripped of their spirit, their character and their fight. We need to be their voice, their hope and their fighter.

Let’s help each other

If you are currently caring for someone, let me on behalf of this world say thank you. We need to be a world that cares for one another and I don’t think there are many better things that you can do on this earth than care for another. We all deserve the best level of care we can get and we need more people that are willing to give it.

My book is available only through amazon at the moment in eBook form as it is the most accessible and popular place to get books from this day. For the first 90 days I had to put a price to download it so I set it at the lowest it could be which was 99 pence or cents depending on what country you are in. I didn’t want to charge for it as I just want to get it in to the hands of as many people as possible, so when I can I will be making it a free eBook. I have also not put any DRM on it so please if you do download it; please feel free to share with others. The number of downloads this book gets isn’t important, the number of people who read it is.

This isn’t my first book but it is the one I am most proud of. I hope that it is a fitting tribute and legacy for my mum. I hope that through her life and through my words we can make a difference. I hope it encourages people to seek help and to not suffer alone. If it just helps one person then the months of hard work will be so worth it. In the heat of emotional situations we make many promises and many are not kept but I am so glad that I kept this promise to my mum to write a book in her honour.