Diane Ackerman’s new book, A Hundred Names for Love, is the personal account of her journey with husband, Paul West, through stroke and aphasia and the bonds that held strong to the other side. She is a poet and naturalist; he a writer. The world of words is one that they share now, and did then. All aphasia narratives have a unique tale to tell, and this one does too. I listened today to the Leonard Lopate show on WNYC, in which Diane is interviewed about her book, and the story it tells.
It pains me to hear that while there were aphasia therapists in their lives during this time, none of them appeared to provide what was desired, despite good hearts and motives. Ms. Ackerman states there were at least five. How can that be, I ask myself? How can there be so many aphasia therapists who did not have the kind of connection and individualized approach that they sought? The Life Participation Approach to Aphasia (LPAA) has been with us now for more than two decades.
I hear in Ms. Ackerman’s podcast her opinions about what aphasia is or is not, and I cannot help but react internally when they disagree with mine. This does not take away from the love story she tells, but it saddens me to know that many people hearing this, reading the book, may form their own opinions that take them someplace other than the truth about aphasia, and good LPAA treatment. We need to tell that story as well.
Listen to the podcast here, and feel free to comment.
I will wait for you in the field.