Thursday, 17 October 2013 13:20
Barbara Sharik, Louisiana author, writes book about her Alzheimer bout
Written by 

brainAlthough I usually find humor and lightness in everything because it makes even the darkest nights bearable, this column introduces a serious subject. This week I published MY SHRINKING BRAIN: DANCING AS FAST AS I CAN, A book about Alzheimer’s disease.



Several months ago my neurologist, Dr Vipul Shelat, asked if I had family here. Shortening the long story, he wanted daughter Theresa to accompany me on my next visit. This was April. This was when he used the “A” word: Alzheimer’s. Early onset. Whoa Mama! 

I’ve been seeing him after suffering a stroke apparently caused by a reaction to Mobic mid 2010. Left with tremors, Dr Kahlil sent me Dr Shelat. Parkenson’s disease was suspected. The testing began. He said there was something on one side of my brain. We would monitor it.

At this same time my daughter-in-law Cindy had developed a tumor on her brain. Inoperable, she was given mere months to live. However, even though it’s wrapped around her brain, caused speech and motor problems, it stopped growing. Here it is, 2013 and we spoke on the phone just this morning. She’s living on borrowed time, but she is living. She underwent some treatment, found others too horrible to bear and ceased. We try to visit by phone at least once a month. She’s my late son Tony’s widow, and the mother of my only grandchild, Alisha. 

We commiserated about our brain ailments. A year passed and Dr Shelat prescribed meds for seizures, because six months after the stroke, I was back in the hospital suffering from seizures. Brain going wrong. He also eventually prescribed meds for memory problems and used on Alzheimer’s patients. I didn’t think much of it because I knew seizures wreaked havoc and I trusted his judgment explicitly.
We rocked along. I underwent several more tests over this period of time. With the last testing, he reached his conclusion. That’s when he asked to speak with Theresa. Early onset Alzheimer’s Disease. 
I put aside the novel I was working on, a sequel to NORMAL, a psychological thriller. I started writing a book about Alzheimer’s Disease, as experienced firsthand. My forte is humor. Therefore, I present the book with facts, but interspersed a lightness. Ann Hamilton of El Paso supplies an array of symbolic interior photographs. Robert Arrington creates a cover featuring Alaska’s Knik Glacier; glaciers melt just as brains shrink. Mona L. Hayden, publicist, and editor ofLouisiana Road Trips, provides a touching preface.

The book doesn’t give medical advise but instead provides current but limited information available about this unrelenting disease. It includes a number of firsthand statements from people who have dealt with loved ones suffering. It gives insight into what can be expected, and how best to deal with it. There’s no cure. It will continue to advance once it’s manifested itself. The book includes useful information such as how to draw up a Living Will, plus contact numbers for various Alzheimer’s agencies.
Not a big book, however, it’s an important book. It’s currently available at and soon can be downloaded as an eReader on Kindle. A copy will be at the Morehouse Parish Library soon, and I have copies also. For more information email me atThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit me on Facebook or call me at 318.823.2668.

Sharing a quote: “When everything stops being funny, I will be done. I will turn in my house key and move on down the road. The long and winding road. You will know me by the fist being shaken toward the heavens and the tears streaming down my wrinkled cheeks. You will know me even when I no longer know myself.” Barbara Sharik.

Bayoubuzz Note:  Barara Sharik has written a few columns for our website.  We wish her the very best and know that her words will help others

Here is a link to the book 

Login to post comments
Powered By JFBConnect
  • Edwards gets Graves challenge on Louisiana flood relief money
  • Gov. Edwards's pugnacious state of union gave wrong Louisiana vision
  • Trump plus 80 days: Jim Brown, Bernie Pinsonat talk US, Louisiana politics
  • Trump should be like Reagan, not like Bush

graves c 3Shades of Katrina?

    Is political partisanship raising its ugly head again in the face of another Louisiana disaster?  Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards thinks so.

    Edwards got some rough treatment from a congressional committee in Washington, D.C. when he testified before it recently about the state’s response to flood problems.

Read More

jbeWith equal parts pugnaciousness and disingenuousness, Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards’ highly-politicized 2017 State of the State speech laid out a truly flawed vision for Louisiana going forward.

Read More

jim bernieIs Russia now our enemy, once again?

Did Donald Trump make the right move or was the latest attack, simply some wag the dog?

Read More

Iron nancy reagan 6n 1986, United States President Ronald Reagan authorized military aircraft to unleash a torrent of bombs in Tripoli, Libya to send a strong message to Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. The attack was in response to Gaddafi’s involvement in the terrorist bombing of a Berlin disco that resulted in the death of American soldiers. 

Read More


Sen. Appel talks budget, economy


Dead Pelican

Optimized-DeadPelican2 1 1