Mama's ChickensMichelle Worthington
A sensitive, beautifully illustrated book that uses backyard chickens to give a closely observed child's-eye view of early-onset dementia.
Mama didn't want chickens, but she grows to love them as her dementia symptoms increase. Her young children see that she doesn't always act like her old self anymore; this upsets both them and the chickens, but Mama always finds ways to show them just how much they are wanted and loved.
Children will relate to the endearing personalities of the chickens, while the award winning author draws on her own experience to create an entirely age-appropriate story about the impact of early-onset dementia. The result is a supportive, much-needed book about a reality that many families face.
Dementia doesn't only affect the elderly. Like the parent in the story, people with early-onset dementia may have memory loss, difficulty thinking, trouble recognising people or confusion, or begin acting unlike themselves. Michelle Worthington has had personal experience of all of these symptoms since her diagnosis with Progressive Nonfluent Aphasia (a form of dementia), and hopes her book will help children understand what dementia can look like when their care-giver suffers from it.
Her wish is that the book will initiate open and honest communication and help parents all around the world recognise the symptoms while providing love and support for their children.