Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Life Story Network

I have just returned from two days in London, where we were working with the Life Story Network.

The highlight of this was being allowed to sit and watch the proceedings in the Chamber of the House of Lords.

Before this, a few people gave talks about the positives of Life Story Work, which was given in front of some important members of the house of Lords.

I do think Life Story work is very important to all who are on the dementia journey, as it allows them to talk about their lives and explain, where they came from, their jobs, families, and any highlights.

Many of us have things in our lives which were unknown to our families and loved ones. So this is an opportunity to tell it all and get it written down, and if possible have any photographs put into the same book. This can then be kept as a memory so that our future grandchildren can really learn about us.

When I was diagnosed, I was told by my consultant, to go home and start to write my life story. This was for two reasons. The first was, to get me to explain who I was and what I did in life. The second reason was, it would keep me occupied and therefore keep my brain active.

In everyone's life there may well be things which we don't want to talk about, and these subjects should be treated with care, and not exposed as they could be sensitive.

There will also be many happy memories we want to share, as well as things we did which made us proud, but perhaps did not talk about. These could be spoken about and explored.

I myself worked for the Alzheimer's Society as a volunteer for many years, and did talks around the country as well as media and television work.

But many events were not publicised as I did not like being in the public eye, and as explained on many occasions, I did not do it for myself or for the publicity but it was  done to help others.

I was extremely lucky in so much as I could do this work to help others less fortunate, and although I enjoyed it and it kept my brain active, I would not have talked about it 

The funny thing about the media work was, that my grandchildren could not work out just how I was on Television at times, and they could not accept me being on television.

This was well before I started using things like face book etc, and even though I use this social media today, its not for me , but I have enjoyed helping others out by answering questions, and it gives me a lot of pride in doing it.

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