Alzheimer's

Rena McDaniel Is Michelin Star Worthy

 

Like many of you, when I turned forty-five, I began to worry about Alzheimer’s Disease.  Why?  It wasn’t because I, ultimately, predicted that I would be interviewing this issue’s celebrity guest Leeza Gibbons, who has done wonders to raise awareness about the disease as a result of her mom having it.  Or that I would be interviewing the same issue’s Spotlighted guest, Rena McDaniel, who’s mother also has the disease and subsequently, must also “carry through.” My reason was much “closer to home”.  I began forgetting things...something very unusual for me but not unusual for this stage of a person’s life (or so I am told).

 

In any event, Alzheimer’s Disease - to me - is one of the most frightening propositions a person might face --not only for themselves but for their children. Losing one’s “awareness, recognition, and past” is a robbery that undermines everything we are as intelligent, caring, and engaged human beings.  And yet it happens and our children are left holding the bag.  It is a difficult position I pray to never have to put my children in.  No parent hopes this challenge or burden on a child, yet it exists.

 

Luckily, so do mom bloggers like Rena McDaniel who launch blogs like The Diary of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver so as to ensure that those who have the toughest role in all of this, don’t feel so alone.  If you are coping with the unthinkable named Alzheimer’s Disease, might I introduce you to your new best friend and resource through this interview, below. 

 

What is your full name?

Rena McDaniel 

 

What is your personal mantra?

Appreciate the good; laugh at the crazy; and deal with the rest!

 

Tell us about your life, including where you live, number of children and anything else you would like to share.

I live in sunny SC with my husband of 25 years and my mother who has Alzheimer's. In 2011, I was diagnosed with a rare form of RA called Felty’s Syndrome, which is an autoimmune disease. The isolation born from that propelled me to start writing and blogging which then turned into a career as a freelance writer, web designer, and Technical Virtual Assistant. I have two grown children and five grandchildren.

 

Do you believe you have a “life’s purpose?”  If so, share it. 

I think that I was put here to bring awareness to the unpaid family caregiver and to write the next bestselling fiction novel (one of these days).

 

Finish this sentence, “The best part about being a mom is _____.”

Watching my adult children go out into the world and begin families of their very own.

 

What is the name of your blog?  When was it launched?  

The Diary of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver began in January 2014, when the loneliness and isolation from my disease and full-time caregiving became too much. The Blogging 911 in February of 2016, when I launched my web design and Technical V.A. business.

 

What is the primary focus of your blog and what do you hope to accomplish through it?

  • To bring awareness to the unpaid family caregiver and Alzheimer’s sufferers everywhere.

  • To build a business that can fulfill me and make me happy.

 

Do you blog for other blogs or sites?

I have appeared on Huffington Post, Midlife Blvd., Alzheimer’s Reading Room, LivHome.com, Blogging On The Side, and SitsGirls

 

Which social media outlet do you find most useful?

My favorites are Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, but I also use Twitter quite a bit.

 

What is the one piece of advice you would give to those who may be interested in beginning a blog?

Take your time and don’t be afraid to ask questions! Oh, and hire me to build your site!

 

Are you an entrepreneur or professional beyond your blog (and outside of being a mom)?  Please share.

The Blogging 911 Technical Virtual Assistant and web design 

 

Do you support – either formally or informally – a particular social cause?

Alheimer’s Association

 

When all is said and done, how do you want to be remembered?

I think that everyone wants to be remembered for something and I hope I am remembered for my kindness and eagerness to help others. Oh and I make a mean lasagna!

 

I’m a big fan of lasagna and I’m a big fan of Rena McDaniel’s too.  Both show enormous ‘good taste’ in feeding, those starving for sustenance, exactly what they need.  Combined, they are 'Michelin star' worthy, especially when considering the limited training involved in mastering each outcome combined with the emotional toll that remains.  As they say, it is all in the quality of the ingredients.  And The Diary of an Alzheimer’s Caregiver and its author are top quality stuff!