Care in Libraries
Libraries are a great place to study, find something exciting to read, and a fantastic place to meet new people, but Libraries are also a place filled with people who care about their community. From our everyday work, ensuring children and parents find materials that meeting reading levels and interests and providing engaging and informative programming, to our partnerships with other organizations, we look at how to provide the best service, the highest care, and have the greatest impact on the community we serve: You!
As part of that dedication to service, we have partnered with two organizations in the area to provide space for their support groups as part of Library programming: Area Agency on Aging and Amedisys Hospice. Below is the information about both of these groups, their meeting times and locations, and some information on materials for those in a caregiver role or who have recently experienced a loss.
Area Agency on Aging: Caregiver Support Group
Join the Area Agency on Aging at your Temple Public Library for a Caregiver Support Group. This Alzheimer’s Association support group, conducted by trained facilitators, are a safe place for people living with dementia and their care partners to develop a support system, exchange practical information on challenges and possible solutions, talk through issues and ways of coping, and share feelings, needs, and concerns.
Frequency: First Friday of Every month at 10AM
Location: 3rd Floor | Board Room
Contact: Jenniffer Hentzen, firstname.lastname@example.org
Amedisys Hospice Bereavement Group
Amedisys provides bereavement support for families and loved ones facing the death of a loved one. The group will meet for 6 weeks, every Thursday from 3-4:30pm in the Board Room on the 3rd Floor.
Frequency: Thursdays at 3PM
Location: 3rd Floor | Board Room
Contact: Jenniffer Hentzen, email@example.com
Books for Alzheimer’s/Dementia Caregivers
Steph Jagger lost her mother before she lost her. Her mother, stricken with an incurable disease that slowly erases all sense of self, struggles to remember her favorite drink, her favorite song, and--perhaps most heartbreaking of all--Steph herself. Steph watches as the woman who loved and raised her slips away before getting the chance to tell her story, and so Steph makes a promise: her mother will walk it and she will write it.Too aware of her mother's waning memory, Steph proposes that the two take a camping trip out to Montana--which her mother, on the urging of Steph's father, agrees to embark upon. An adventure full of horseback riding, hiking, and "tenting" out West quickly turns into one woman's reflection on childhood, motherhood, personhood--and what it means to love someone who doesn't quite remember the person she spent her lifetime becoming.A staggeringly beautiful examination of how stories are passed down through generations and from Mother Nature, Everything Left to Remember brings us the wisdom of who our memories make us, under the constellations of the vast Montana sky.
Our brains are the most complex machines known to humankind, but they have an Achilles heel: the very molecules that allow us to exist can also sabotage our minds. Here are gripping accounts of unruly molecules and the diseases that form in their wake.
A college student cannot remember if she has eaten breakfast. By dinner, she is strapped to a hospital bed, convinced she is battling zombies. A man planning to propose marriage instead becomes violently enraged, gripped by body spasms so severe that he nearly bites off his own tongue. One after another, poor farmers in South Carolina drop dead from a mysterious epidemic of dementia.
With an intoxicating blend of history and intrigue, Sara Manning Peskin invites readers to play medical detective, tracing each diagnosis from the patient to an ailing nervous system. Along the way, Peskin entertains with tales of the sometimes outlandish, often criticized, and forever devoted scientists who discovered it all.
Peskin never loses sight of the human impact of these conditions. Alzheimer's Disease is more than the gradual loss of a loved one; it can be a family's multigenerational curse. The proteins that abound in every cell of our bodies are not simply strings of oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, and carbon; they are the building blocks of our personalities and relationships. A Molecule Away from Madness is an unputdownable journey into the deepest mysteries of our brains.
"For the decade of my father's illness, I felt as if I was floating in the deep end, tossed by waves, carried by currents, but not drowning," writes Patti Davis in this searingly honest and deeply moving account of the challenges involved in taking care of someone stricken with Alzheimer's.
When her father, the fortieth president of the United States, announced his Alzheimer's diagnosis in an address to the American public in 1994, the world had not yet begun speaking about this cruel, mysterious disease. Yet overnight, Ronald Reagan and his immediate family became the face of Alzheimer's, and Davis, once content to keep her family at arm's length, quickly moved across the country to be present during "the journey that would take [him] into the sunset of [his] life."
Empowered by all she learned from caring for her father--about the nature of the illness, but also about the loss of a parent--Davis founded a support group for the family members and friends of Alzheimer's patients. Along with a medically trained cofacilitator, she met with hundreds of exhausted and devastated attendees to talk through their pain and confusion. While Davis was aware that her own circumstances were uniquely fortunate, she knew there were universal truths about dementia, and even surprising gifts to be found in a long goodbye.
With Floating in the Deep End, Davis draws on a welter of experiences to provide a singular account of battling Alzheimer's. Eloquently woven with personal anecdotes and helpful advice tailored specifically for the overlooked caregiver, this essential guide covers every potential stage of the disease from the initial diagnosis through the ultimate passing and beyond. Including such tips as how to keep a loved one hygienic, and careful responses for when they drift to a time gone by, Davis always stresses the emotional milestones that come with slow-burning grief.
Along the way, Davis shares how her own fractured family came together. With unflinching candor, she recalls when her mother, Nancy, who for decades could not show her children compassion or vulnerability, suddenly broke down in her arms. Davis also offers tender moments in which her father, a fabled movie star whom she always longed to know better, revealed his true self--always kind, even when he couldn't recognize his own daughter.
An inherently wise work that promises to become a classic, Floating in the Deep End ultimately provides hope to struggling families while elegantly illuminating the fragile human condition.
Around 50 million people around the world have dementia. Each year, nearly 10 million new cases are reported. By some estimates, the number of people living with dementia could triple by 2050. This book offers an update on what experts know about Alzheimer's and related dementias, including the latest research into treatment and prevention, ways to live well with dementia, and recommendations for people who care for someone with dementia. By some estimates, the number of people living with dementia could triple by 2050. Although the diseases that cause dementia have long been considered unrelenting and incurable, recent advances offer hope.
Books on Grief / Loss
In 1969, Elisabeth Kübler Ross first identified the stages of dying in her transformative book On Death and Dying. Decades later, she and David Kessler wrote the classic On Grief and Grieving, introducing the stages of grief with the same transformative pragmatism and compassion. Now, based on hard-earned personal experiences, as well as knowledge and wisdom earned through decades of work with the grieving, Kessler introduces a critical sixth stage.
Many people look for "closure" after a loss. Kessler argues that it's finding meaning beyond the stages of grief most of us are familiar with--denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance--that can transform grief into a more peaceful and hopeful experience.
In this book, Kessler gives readers a roadmap to remembering those who have died with more love than pain; he shows us how to move forward in a way that honors our loved ones. Kessler's insight is both professional and intensely personal. His journey with grief began when, as a child, he witnessed a mass shooting at the same time his mother was dying. For most of his life, Kessler taught physicians, nurses, counselors, police, and first responders about end of life, trauma, and grief, as well as leading talks and retreats for those experiencing grief. Despite his knowledge, his life was upended by the sudden death of his twenty-one-year-old son.
How does the grief expert handle such a tragic loss? He knew he had to find a way through this unexpected, devastating loss, a way that would honor his son. That, ultimately, was the sixth state of grief--meaning. In Finding Meaning, Kessler shares the insights, collective wisdom, and powerful tools that will help those experiencing loss.
Finding Meaning is a necessary addition to grief literature and a vital guide to healing from tremendous loss. This is an inspiring, deeply intelligent must-read for anyone looking to journey away from suffering, through loss, and towards meaning.
Notes on Grief is an exquisite work of meditation, remembrance, and hope, written in the wake of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's beloved father's death in the summer of 2020. As the COVID-19 pandemic raged around the world, and kept Adichie and her family members separated from one another, her father succumbed unexpectedly to complications of kidney failure.
Expanding on her original New Yorker piece, Adichie shares how this loss shook her to her core. She writes about being one of the millions of people grieving this year; about the familial and cultural dimensions of grief and also about the loneliness and anger that are unavoidable in it. With signature precision of language, and glittering, devastating detail on the page--and never without touches of rich, honest humor--Adichie weaves together her own experience of her father's death with threads of his life story, from his remarkable survival during the Biafran war, through a long career as a statistics professor, into the days of the pandemic in which he'd stay connected with his children and grandchildren over video chat from the family home in Abba, Nigeria.
In the compact format of We Should All Be Feminists and Dear Ijeawele, Adichie delivers a gem of a book--a book that fundamentally connects us to one another as it probes one of the most universal human experiences. Notes on Grief is a book for this moment--a work readers will treasure and share now more than ever--and yet will prove durable and timeless, an indispensable addition to Adichie's canon.
When Kate Inglis's twin boys were born prematurely, one survived and the other did not. This is the powerful, unsparing account of her experience, her bereavement, and ultimately how she was able to move forward and help other parents who had experienced such profound loss. Inglis's story is a springboard that can help other bereaved parents reflect on key aspects of the experience, such as emotional survival in the first year after loss; dealing with family, friends, and bystanders post-loss; the unique female state post-bereavement of shame and sorrow at "failing," or somehow not fulfilling your role; the importance of community; recognizing society's inability to deal with grief and loss; how loss breeds compassion; coping with anniversaries; and beginning the work of "integration" (as opposed to "healing").
Poetry serves a unique role in our lives, distilling human experience and emotion down to truths as potent as they are brief. There are two times most people turn to it: for love and loss. The Art of Losing will be the first anthology of its kind, delivering poetry with a purpose. Editor Kevin Young has introduced and selected 150 devastatingly beautiful poems that embrace the pain and heartbreak of mourning. Divided into five sections (Reckoning, Remembrance, Rituals, Recovery, and Redemption), with poems by some of our most beloved poets as well as the best of the current generation of poets,The Art of Losing is the ideal a gift for a loved one in a time of need and for use by ministers, rabbis, and palliative care workers who tend to those who are experiencing loss.
Among the poets included: Elizabeth Alexander, W.H. Auden, Amy Clampitt, Billy Collins, Emily Dickinson, Louise Gluck, Ted Hughes, Galway Kinnell, Kenneth Koch, Philip Larkin, Li-Young Lee, Philip Levine, Marianne Moore, Sharon Olds Mary Oliver, Robert Pinsky, Adrienne Rich, Theodore Roethke, Anne Sexton, Wallace Stevens, Dylan Thomas, Derek Walcott, and James Wright.
Written by Natalie McAdams, Library Director