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Two bubblegum-pink blobular creatures stand in an unfamiliar woods in Tori Tinsley’s acrylic painting, “Forest Hug.” One reaches toward the other, who looks away without reaching back. The eye-popping work may look cartoonish, but it’s an artistic expression of Tinsley’s grief.
When Pam Van Ahn greets you at the front door of Amy’s Place, she has a tail-wagging companion, Earl. The friendly black dachshund was previously owned by Van Ahn’s late mother, Carol, who was diagnosed with dementia and passed away in 2012. Van Ahn, a former nurse who moved to Roswell in 2011 to take care of her mother, says that her family created Amy’s Place—a unique gathering space known as a “memory care cafe” for people with dementia and their families—after learning firsthand what caregivers go through.
I was away at photography school, Creative Circus in Atlanta, when my mom started to suspect something was wrong with my dad. It wasn’t one moment, more like a series of subtle changes in his behavior.
When a deadly disease has no cure, no prevention, and no life-changing treatment, our natural response is fear and denial. Even physicians are prone to avoid discussing Alzheimer’s.