In Search of Rainbows: A daughter's story of loss, hope, and redemption.
By Susan Landeis
A short excerpt:
I noticed my mother was growing tired again, and I decided to pack it up and call it a day. As I was putting the old photos back in the box, one of them caught my eye. It was a picture of my mother holding me on her lap. She had her arms wrapped tightly around me. We were smiling broadly, and we both looked relaxed and happy. I was about three years old, and I recognized the Bear Tooth Pass behind us in the photo that was taken on a trip my parents had taken to Yellowstone National Park.
As I looked more closely at the photograph, I realized that there weren't very many pictures of my mother and me together, even when I was young. It made me wonder-at what point did our lives take such a drastic turn? I realized that she must have tried her best to love me and be a good mother before she ultimately gave up on life. It was a sobering thought, and I couldn't imagine feeling that hopeless. I considered the close bond I felt with my children, and I suddenly had chills. It was disturbing to think of what could possibly cause a mother to reject her own child.
I knew our time together was dwindling, and I was reminded of it each time I came to visit. On those rare occasions when my mother was fully coherent, I realized that she was now able to live in the present moment, something she was never able to do before her illness. As I sat there with her, holding her hand, I realized how much she had taught me throughout our lives. I thought about growing up without a mother's unconditional love and how I learned to love myself in spite of it. I had come to learn the value of family and people you hold closest to your heart. I also learned to be strong in the face of fear. But perhaps the toughest lesson of all was learning about forgiveness.
We had once been a family divided by heartbreak. And now, we were reunited by love and unforeseen circumstances. I was beginning to understand that there is a reason for everything that happens to us and was reminded again that God works in mysterious ways!
What people are saying...
Could not put it down. Very will written, and came from the heart. There are so many parts to the story that will resonate with others. ~ Book Review
I admire her courage to pick up the broken pieces of her life and make them into something beautiful! ~ Book Review
Love, love, love what she writes about gratitude! Nicely written. ~ Book Review
Susan Landeis writes about resolving the most difficult experiences in her life by coming to view them as her greatest blessings. Truly Remarkable. ~ Amazon Review
Optimal Caregiving: A guide for managing senior health and wellbeing. By Susan Landeis, CNC
A short excerpt:
As a caregiver, you are experiencing one of the most challenging, yet rewarding roles in your lifetime. It's not easy, and it's certainly not for the faint of heart! Caregiving is an act of kindness, loyalty, and love. It requires dedication and lots of patience. It is often a thankless, and sometimes unnoticed, job. For many of us, we fell into caregiving without plan or warning. Like other roles in our lives, such as becoming a parent or spouse, it comes with no instructions. Whether you are caring for a parent, a spouse, your child, or other loved ones, it can leave you feeling stressed and drained. This can take a toll on your own personal health and well-being.
As life expectancies increase, medical treatments become more advanced, and more people are living with chronic illness and disabilities, more of us will find ourselves participating in the caregiving process. You don't have to be an expert or a superhero to be a good caregiver. Remembering to care for yourself and finding the right help and support without sacrificing yourself can make all the difference. If you are new to caregiving, it can feel overwhelming at first and it's hard to know just where to begin. Everyone's set of circumstances is going to be different, but it's important to educate yourself as much as possible about your loved one's illness or disability. The more you know, the less anxiety you will feel and the more successful you will be!
Encourage their independence as much as possible. Caregiving does not mean doing everything for your loved one. Look for new strategies or technologies that allow for more independence. It not only benefits them, but you as well! It's important to know your own limits. Be realistic about how much of your time you can spend caring for your loved one. If you are also working or caring for your own family, be careful about spreading yourself too thin. When we have too many responsibilities, we start to neglect ourselves.
Because of the physical and emotional demands of caregiving, caregivers face an increased risk of depression, chronic illness, and decline in quality of life. While managing caregiving responsibilities, caregivers often neglect their own health and well-being, believing that they should put their loved one first. They often suffer from sleep deprivation, poor eating habits, or failure to attend to their own medical issues. Taking care of our own health and well-being is the best thing we can do for our loved ones, and often the most forgotten. It is only when we care for ourselves that we can truly be successful at caring for someone else!
What people are saying...
I highly recommend this book for anyone who finds them self in the position of being a caregiver. The book outlines many aspects of caregiving that are often missed or overlooked. The nutritional information is invaluable and I found myself bookmarking many pages for future reference. The book is an excellent guide for those looking to be supportive of aging parents, or grandparents. It is packed full of solid information to keep seniors healthy and happy. ~Amazon Review
The author has certainly done her research on this topic. Her life experiences and her quest to find answers for her ailing and aging parents has made this book an excellent resource for caregivers. I highly recommend the book because of the practical information she sheds on various topics. It is well written and easy to read. Susan shares her heart in this excellent book and is passionate about providing a quality life for the elderly. It is also a preventative resource for those entering into our retirement years. ~Amazon Review
Sue has done a great job combining life experiences and a lot of education and research, resulting in a great read! Really great information, easy to read and understand and a great support tool for people who are supporting their aging parents! Thank you for sharing! ~Amazon Review
Before the Diagnosis: More Stories of Life and Love Before Dementia.
In the Stillness, by Susan Landeis
Susan Landeis' short story, In the Stillness, honors her late mother who suffered from Lewy body dementia. This anthology was written by 23 individuals to remind others that people who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia lived a life worth remembering and were so much more than their medical condition.
The purchase of this book supports the work of Alzheimer's Orange County and 100% of sales are donated to their ongoing efforts. You can learn more about them by visiting their website at www.alzoc.org.