Friday, June 03, 2022

#BookReview: Walking Him Home: Helping My Husband Die with Dignity by Joanne Tubbs Kelly

Synopsis: Alan and Joanne marry in midlife and live a happily-ever-after existence until, at sixty-nine, Alan is diagnosed with a rare, fatal, neurodegenerative illness. As he becomes increasingly disabled and dependent on others, and decreasingly able to find joy in life, he decides he wants to end his suffering using Colorado’s Medical Aid in Dying law. 

Joanne desperately wants Alan to live, but when he asks for her help completing the Medical Aid in Dying application, she can’t say no. She helps him complete the requirements, hoping deep down that his application will be denied . . . only to be stunned when his medical team approves his request and writes him a prescription for the life-ending drugs. 

Told with affection and spiced with humor, Walking Him Home is Joanne’s tale of coming to terms with her kind, funny husband’s illness; of learning to navigate the intricate passageways of caregiving and the pitfalls of our medical system; and of choosing to help Alan in his quest to die with dignity, even though she wants nothing more than to grow old with him. Tender and heartfelt, this is one woman’s story about loving extravagantly—and being loved in kind.


Rating: 3 Stars
My Review: Unfortunately I don't think this one was for me.  I felt that this one although was interesting failed to keep me interested in the story.  I think I might try it again down the road. But the subject matter is just so depressing unfortunately.  But I think that this book could help someone going through the same situation. 

About the Author

As a kid, Joanne Tubbs Kelly moved around a lot, but she always felt at home when she had her nose stuck in a book. As an adult, she provided marketing communications services to high-tech companies. Now that she’s retired, she lives in Boulder in the home she and her husband, now deceased, remodeled from top to bottom. She delights in puttering in her garden and walking and hiking where she can wallow in the beauty of Boulder’s Flatirons and Colorado’s high peaks. Whenever she’s not in her garden or out walking, you can usually find her up to her old tricks: hiding out somewhere with her nose stuck in a book.  --This text refers to the paperback edition.


“Joanne Kelly is an accomplished writer, telling the sweet, honest, and engaging end-of-life story of her beloved husband. Walking Him Home lays bare the joy and grief, the sweet rewards, and the unavoidable costs of two people loving each other deeply and well to the end. Kelly does not spare us the frustrations and fears of being caregiver, advocate, and lover, and the poignant events of her husband's passing carry lessons for us all.” —Barbara Coombs Lee, President Emerita of Compassion & Choices, author of Finish Strong: Putting Your Priorities First at Life’s End, and coauthor of Oregon's Death with Dignity Act “Joanne Kelly has written a timeless memoir about the joy of midlife romance, the give and take of marriage, the sheer wonder of loving someone completely, and the courage it takes to help your partner say a final good-bye after a terminal illness strikes. Compelling and unforgettable.” —Pete Earley, author of Pulitzer Prize finalist CRAZY: A Father’s Search Through America’s Mental Health Madness --This text refers to the paperback edition.  --This text refers to the paperback edition.

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