Janet Dunnett: The Dwindling

The millennium dawns. 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 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 dwindling, they sharpen their skills and hone new inner 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 settings, and hospices. They come to appreciate the challenges all health systems are facing as they work to deliver high-calibre care at the edge of life. Some readers might ponder, “What will happen when the boomer generation begins to dwindle?”

Lyrical and full of humour and insight, this memoir is a fast-paced, eyes-wide-open and hope-filled narrative for our time.

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