When people think of dementia most of us focus on what’s lost. But Positive Approach to Care® Certified Independent Trainers and Consultants like myself prefer to acknowledge what’s lost but focus our energy on what’s left. By sharing what I know about brain change, dementia progression, and practical hand-skills, I help you explore new ways to connect with your loved one and make life better for everyone involved. —Laura Hendrie
I was 26 and heading off into the world as a writer when my mother began to change. She said the neighbors had taken our dog. She hid silverware in her purse. At night she talked about a man in thecloset. I didn’t know what dementia was—I didn’t want to know—and despite the changes we both tried to ignore, deny, fix, or live with, when she died 18 years later, I still knew very little about what she’d gone through.
But what I’d seen of her dementia had changed me. I continued to pursue my writing career but I also became curious about the disease of dementia. I sought out friends living with it. I signed up with hospice to visit patients dying of it. I wrote an award-winning novel based on it. Sometimes I referred to myself as an ‘expert’.
This was not true. I had plenty of stories and facts to share, but whenever I met someone who had been diagnosed with dementia, I had little to offer in the way of skill.
Then I came on a Youtube video showing the renowned occupational therapist and dementia specialist Teepa Snow demonstrating eye, voice, and hand skills she’d created to help calm, guide, and comfort people living with brain change. These were skills I’d never been told about by doctors or nurses or other caregivers. Better yet, they were the very skills I had so desperately needed when my mother had been alive.
Today, as an educator and a certified independent trainer and consultant, I offer both accredited and non-accredited workshops designed by Teepa Snow and the PAC® organization to families and professionals from all walks of life who want to learn how to improve the quality of life for people they care for who live with dementia.
WHAT I OFFER
Dementia Care Consultations
My job is to help you figure out what you want to accomplish and how you want to accomplish it. We’ll start with an initial 30-minute free phone conversation to learn know more about each other and what you might need help with. If we decide we can work together, we’ll create a written assessment of where you are on the journey of dementia: what’s working well for you, what’s not been working so well, and what care skills you might work on next. When needed, I can also help you if it is time to transition your loved one to a new living situation .
Dementia Care Training Workshops
As a PAC® Certified IndependentTrainer I offer education workshops designed on and/or created by world-renowned dementia expert Teepa Snow. My audiences have included family members, people living with dementia, professional caregivers, emergency medical service employees, realtors, and front desk hotel receptionists. CE’s are available for nurses and Social Workers in New Mexico.
- Normal Aging Vs. Not-Normal Aging
- You Have the Diagnosis—Now What?
- Using All Five Senses in Dementia Partnering
- Ten Unmet Needs in Dementia
- What’s Lost—and What’s Left?
- De-Coding Distress
- Q and A What’s On Your Mind?
- Dementia Progression Patterns
- Surviving as a Dementia Care Partner
- Learning to Communicate with Visual Handskills
- Improving Emergency Medical Services for People Living With Dementia
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
“Laura was fearless, clear, and helpful. She came back and back and back, explaining every which way until I got it. I say Hallelujah! Laura opened doors I couldn’t even see.” CW
“Laura’s comments and suggestions, combined with her great heart, were just so perfect for me. Especially at this time in my life….With her help I have started the process of knowing what I didn’t know. ” FJ
“There is no group Laura can’t reach. She knows how to teach to a large crowd and to smaller groups in hands-on workshops as well as in private one-on-one encounters. She is a master at organizing, presenting complicated ideas, and creating compelling Power Points.” TD, Santa Fe
In February, I offered a two hour experiential Dementia Care Training by zoom to the Santa Fe police department. If you’re a fireman, EMT, ambulance driver, or a police officer interested in learning more about how to improve emergency medical services role in dementia care, feel free to contact me.
As an education consultant, I recently joined Dr. Kitty Fallon’s Alzheimer’s Support Group, The Gloaming, which meets twice monthly in El Dorado, Santa Fe.
I am currently putting together a workshop for families wishing to understand what stage their person is experiencing in the progression of dementia. By learning to support the abilities that are retained every step of the way, care partners become creative and flexible enough to stay with their person throughout the journey ahead.
REMEMBER ME, a novel published by Henry Holt in 1998 and by Picador and Piatkus in 2000, is based on my attempts to understand and accept the challenges of my mother’s dementia. REMEMBER ME was a Barnes & Nobel Discover New Writers pick and a critically acclaimed finalist for the Dublin Award and the Mountains and Plains Bookseller’s Award.
STYGO won the 1994 Colorado Book Award for best design, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Foundation Award for First Fiction, the Mountains and Plains Regional Bookseller’s Award, and was a finalist for the Pen/Hemingway Award.
STYGO is a collection of interlocked stories about people trapped in a dying company town in Colorado. Initially published by MacMurray and Beck in 1994, it was re-issued by Simon and Schuster in 1996, and by McAdams/Cage in 2000.
PAC Certified Independent Trainers and Consultants are not employees of Positive Approach, LLC. Opinions and views expressed by Laura Hendrie, LLC do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of Positive Approach, LLC or its employees. Positive Approach, LLC is not liable for any actions by PAC Certified Independent Trainers or Consultants.