An Intimate Alzheimer’s Book
Because one in nine older Americans has Alzheimer’s disease, many spouses are thrust into caregiving roles they never anticipated. A new book by Candy Abbott, I’ve Never Loved Him More: A Husband’s Alzheimers. A Wife’s Devotion, will help them make sense of their days.
This book gives a captivating account of how a four-decade marriage suddenly beset by dementia and Alzheimer’s can still exude romance and purpose. Writing not only from experience and the heart but also from her vital connection with God, the author tells the unvarnished, sometimes raw truth with the sincere motive of helping others in a similar situation.
She shares with readers her candid journey of how the disease has changed their lives as she and her husband, Drew, continue to navigate the unknown path before them. With faith, intimate honesty, humor, and warmth, Candy describes the incremental and monumental changes foisted upon their marriage as the disease worsens in Drew’s brain.
Like the true storyteller she is, Candy spins the funny scenes and moments in a way that brings on belly laughter, sometimes even in the midst of tears. It’s never forced. It’s never inappropriate. It’s just true wit born out of a cheerful spirit that cannot be daunted by even this long, trying ordeal.
This book generates a human connection for anyone experiencing the painful throes of caregiving by visibly illustrating what one can expect when a disease dramatically changes a relationship. Moreover, the author offers creative ways to manage caring for a loved one while caring for oneself. Hope pulses on each page with Candy’s vivid descriptions of their unpredictable days. Drew’s memory loss and physical limitations have not stopped Candy from finding optimism, gratitude, and new memory-making opportunities for herself and her family. Alzheimer’s may have taken Drew’s memory, but it cannot take away her tenderness and stalwart commitment to see him through this season of their lives.
With her use of Scripture throughout the pages, Candy doesn’t ask the reader to simply read the passages and have faith. Instead, she explains in a practical, concrete way just how those verses work in a life that’s being put through the refining fire—which is both humbling and uplifting. Writing truth from a place of authenticity, she speaks in simple terms to the person who is emotionally writhing, offering the benefit of her hard-won wisdom and experience without ever being condescending. She owns her mistakes as well as triumphs.
I’ve Never Loved Him More will serve as a companion to a caregiver in the often overwhelming moments of care, from the point of diagnosis through the mild and moderate phases of the disease. The woman sobbing because her husband is disappearing before her very eyes will be grateful for Candy’s example of strength in the midst of adversity—and her whole family will benefit as well.
This book is not only essential reading for those living through the challenges posed by dementia and Alzheimer’s, but it is also recommended for those who plan to marry. The author’s inspiring story definitively demonstrates what it means to live out those “in sickness or in health” vows taken at the altar.
Every word Candy writes emphasizes the adage, “Seize the day,” for no one ever knows when his or her life and health will be irreversibly altered. Masterfully and sincerely written, this work of the heart will leave an indelible mark on each reader.
Click here for WRDE-TV interview.