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Alzheimer’s disease strikes indiscriminately and without warning. I was no exception to the rule when I was diagnosed four years ago. I was 58. I never thought I would have dementia.

After my diagnosis, I was in shock. Fortunately, my partner has been there to support me and I can still do a great many things by myself. I wash my clothes, I do the ironing, and I make sure the house is spick and span. I have always had a wide range of interests: I love woodworking, I used to be a denturologist, and I volunteer at the SPCA. In short, I love working with my hands and I have a strong will— and this helps me every day.

Frankly, the worst thing to come from my diagnosis is that my driving licence was taken away. I have always been independent, so giving up my licence and taking public transport has been difficult for me.


The health care professionals I have encountered have treated me normally. That’s about it. The attitude of my friends and family has also remained the same; they find that I’m still coherent, and indeed I am! I’m just learning to live with my new reality.



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  • I firmly believe that to convince others that this disease can “affect anyone,” you must first convince yourself. This requires a good deal of thought and introspection. I see dementia as “a grain of salt” that prevents the well-oiled cogs of life from meshing as they should. I am well aware that my condition will deteriorate, but I am not yet at the final stages of the disease and I know that life still has a lot of surprises in store for me. I am staying positive; even with all of the warnings my neurologist has rightly given me.
  • The question we should be asking ourselves is not just “How should we live now?”, but rather “How can we live life fully and make the most of all it still has to offer us?” Make no mistake, this is a serious disease.
  • I am well aware that people living with dementia can react in different ways. Whatever may be said about us, we are unique individuals in a multi-faceted reality, and I realize this thanks to the activities I enjoy at the Alzheimer Society of Montreal. I participate in support groups with people at different stages of the disease and, while I am the youngest, I feel comfortable there.