I started writing short stories in elementary school, starting with a short story about twin track athletes. In college, I wrote for the college newspaper and studied communications. My first job out of college was with a magazine as an assistant editor, where I started a comic strip called City Boy.
My first published work, was a short essay entitled, Dream with Me, published in “The Art of Service” booklet put out by the Thayne Center for Service and Learning. I also published a three part series for families called “Family Parables – Wise Man Foolish Man.” This set is designed to be used by families to create discussion and learning as a family. In 2016, I published my first novel, Love Like Alzheimer’s, a story of a family that is learning to love deeper as their beloved grandmother struggles with Alzheimer’s disease.
No matter where I go, I love to learn about people and their story. Stories are fascinating! Stories make learning fun. Stories bring facts and circumstances to life. I notice how speeches that are stagnant come to life for most of the audience when the speaker tells a personal story. Stories put us in a new position and help us see the world in a new light.
I hope to share stories that will uplift you and bring joy to your life.
The first time I remember Alzheimer’s entering my life, I was about 9 years old. We traveled to Utah to visit my grandfather, who was battling Alzheimer’s disease. They still lived in their house in Orem, UT, but things were starting to change. Grandpa wasn’t really independent. He was acting a little different.
Then we had a family discussion at our home in Texas a couple years later, and Grandpa Curtis was going to a nursing home for Alzheimer’s patients. We made two trips up that year. And the one meeting that stood out to me was that first summer. My father, the oldest of his siblings, had to be introduced to Grandpa, along with all of the kids. And then Grandpa had an Oreo Cookie that he said was the best fish he had ever had. I was shocked.
I look up to both of my parents, but I remember watching my dad closely during this whole visit. I could see that it made him sad to see his father losing his mental faculties, but he never despaired in front of us. It was an important lesson to me. When faced with difficulties, you can let it beat you, or you can learn from it and deal with it. I hope Love Like Alzheimer’s and future books will help people realize this too. Life can be really hard, but if we learn from it, we can grow stronger.