After a traumatic car crash in 2021, Penticton resident Barbra Jensen knew time was precious and that if there was ever a time to get something done, it was now, as no one knows how long each of us has left.
Recovering from a broken neck, Jensen made good on the words of encouragement from her mentor Julie Ferguson of the South Okanagan Writers League and wrote a book.
“I had been writing many stories for about three years, but it was all very scattered and Julie encouraged me to pull the stories together into a book,” said Jenson.
That book was published in March. Alzheimer’s Wife is about Alzheimer’s and the pain Jenson endured after her husband was diagnosed with the disease 12 years ago.
Following her husband’s diagnosis, Jensen was forced to move the two of them from their Salmon Arm home to Athens Creek in Penticton, as she could no longer care for him alone.
Her husband would spend two years at Athens Creek before being moved to Trinity Lodge.“The book is really two parts, the first is about endurance and how I failed at taking my own life,” Jensen explained.
“The second part is about how to pick up the pieces and move forward.”
She hopes caregivers will read the book, as she says it could offer understanding, sympathy and encouragement.
The book is published by Okanagan Publishing, which is helping Jensen to market organizations that discuss mental health and caregiving.
“I did a lot of research and there are references for more help for those who need it at the end of the book,” added Jensen.
While the book deals with a heavy subject she says it is not all sad as there are some funny bits to lighten the mood.
As for what’s next, she says she will not be writing another book because at 86-years-old this is her legacy.
Jensen held a book signing at Athens Creek on Tuesday, May 24, and says the book will be available on Amazon.