Last fall, I had the pleasure of attending a WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s dinner where Barbara (B.) Smith and husband, Dan Gasby, were honored for their Alzheimer’s advocacy work. You may know B. as a chef, restaurateur, entrepreneur, author, lifestyle expert, television host, magazine publisher, or supermodel – this lady has quite a resume!
What you may not know is that Barbara was diagnosed with younger onset Alzheimer’s in 2013 when she was just 64 years of age.
Today, Dan and B. work tirelessly to bring attention to the impending social crisis that is Alzheimer’s disease. They’ve recently written a book entitled, Before I Forget: Love, Hope, Help & Acceptance in Our Fight Against Alzheimer’s, chronicling their story, and whether you have been touched by Alzheimer’s (yet) or not, I suggest you pick up a copy and read it.
Dan writes with a courage and forthrightness that we don’t always see. He shares the good, the bad, and the ugly, in an enlightening and even validating style for those of us who have been through the journey. As I read each page, I found myself nodding, “YES, I’ve felt that way” or “Oh, I remember when that happened to us.”
Throughout the book, Dan shares practical tips based on his own experience. He discusses how this journey has affected the couple’s marriage and some of the things he has found help him cope on a daily basis. Before I Forget is a book about Alzheimer’s, but make no mistake – first and foremost, it’s a love story.
In a recent Alzheimer’s Talks call, Dan encouraged listeners to “do one thing” to move us forward in this fight. Read more about that call in my recap of a very compelling, thought-provoking hour with Dan. You can find it by visiting my friends at UsAgainstAlzheimer’s. Thank you to Trish Vradenburg and Virginia Biggar for allowing me to share my thoughts in A Love Story: B. Smith & Dan Gasby.