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The Dwindling: A Daughter’s Caregiving Journey to the Edge of Life


Twin baby boomers anticipate freedom following kids and careers. But there’s a hitch. Mom and Dad are frail and fading fast. So Judi and Janet become family caregivers, and journey with Betty and Fred to the ends of their lives. Over a decade, the twins reluctantly accept that old age has no cure. As they strive for quality through every stage of the dwindling time, they sharpen their skills and hone new strengths. Both daughters and parents discover their deep connection and tenderness in the slow dance of caring and being cared for. Flashbacks enrich this impassioned story. The twins learn to recognize both excellence and imperfections in doctor’s offices, emergency wards, dementia lockups, assisted living and long term care institutions, and finally hospices. They come to appreciate the challenges that all health systems are facing as they struggle to deliver high-caliber care at the edge of life. Some readers might ponder, “What will happen when the boomer generation begins to dwindle?” Lyrical and rich with humour and insight, this memoir is a fast-paced, eyes-wide-open and hope-filled narrative for our time.