Why I walk:
11 years ago, my dad was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers at the age of 58. The diagnosis was devastating and shocking but a relief after many years of confusion over what could be wrong. In the years following his diagnosis, my family has been on a rollercoaster of managing my dad's symptoms. My mom, who is his primary caregiver, has continued to provide him with amazing care and we are lucky that his disease has seen a slow progression.
The loss has been profound but through it my family has gained a much deeper understanding of my dad as a person. As Alzheimer's takes more and more of his faculties, what seems to be left is his true self. He is kind, loving, caring and possesses a relentless enthusiasm for life. Often while hanging up the phone after one of our chats, I think about how remarkable it is for someone who has experienced so much hardship in life to be filled with so much love, gratitude and happiness. It's a lesson I'm certainly being taught in how to literally forget my troubles and be grateful.
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