We had the good fortune of connecting with Pam Ostrowski and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Pam, what makes you happy? Why?
I love this question because for a long time, I wasn’t happy. I was filled with worry, sadness, frustration and so many other emotions as my mom journey journied through Alzheimer’s. Once she passed, I needed something to fill the void of losing her and my identity as a caregiver. Writing and publishing my book, “It’sNotThat Simple: Helping Families Navigate the Alzheimer’s Journey,” started to really open me up and allow happiness to come back in. The reason? Because as I relived the journey and the decisions we made, as I wrote the caregiver tips and conversations starters, It felt so good knowing that thousands, if not millions, of caregivers would be helped by my book over the coming years. Now, working with Alzheimer’s family caregivers, every time I hang up from a call, I’m filled with happiness because I helped a caregiver build a coping plan, solve a behavior issue, or find peace of mind. This work, my passion, fills me with happiness and gratitude.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
What sets me apart from other Alzheimer’s care professionals is that I traveled a 14-year Alzheimer’s journey with my mother. I felt the conflicting emotions, made the complex decisions, and now, wrote a book on all I learned so that others have a compass, a way to navigate, on their own journey. Now, it’s a matter of getting the book in as many family caregiver hands as possible! I’ve been connecting with as many organizations as I can, from the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America and Dementia Care Education to the Professional Association of Senior Referral Specialists (PASRS) and care communities, such as Avista’s The Summit at Sunland Springs, where I’m leading their Memory Clinic support group. I love how caring, intelligent, and welcoming all of these people I’ve met in this industry are. They truly want to help aging seniors. I feel like I’ve found my tribe. Now I just need to let them know I’m here to help! I want the world to know that dementia and Alzheimer’s aren’t inevitable IF you take nutrition and exercise seriously. For those who are dementia or Alzheimer’s family caregivers, my heart goes out to you. I don’t believe there’s a more difficult journey as it lasts four to eight years and it’s such an emotional rollercoaster. I’m here with solutions, ways to cope better, and guide you so that you can look back on your journey without guilt or regret, only love and peace of mind. You are not alone.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well, first, I’d have a picnic lunch ready and we’d head over to Chaparral Park and sit by the water. We would walk around the lake and then watch the sun set over Camelback Mountain, Breakfasts would be walking to The Morning Squeeze and Daily Dose in Old Town Scottsdale. YUMMY! A visit to the Desert Botanical Garden is a must followed by lunch or dinner at Gertrude’s there on property. Of course, a tour of the Musical Instrument Museum and catching a concert in their amazing auditorium is a must as is heading up to Cave Creek for some shopping and Western ambience at the Buffalo Chip. It’s always a toss up on which lake to visit. I think Canyon lake, with it’s Dolly Steamboat ride, and lunch on the patio is a perfect way to laze the day away and drive there and back is so much fun! Wow, this sounds like SO much fun! I can’t wait until a friend visits! Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
This question makes me tear up. I have had SO much support. I’m delighted how helpful and welcoming the dementia and Alzheimer’s care communities have been. Those who have touched my life and helped me make this transformation are too many to mention. I would like to give a shout out to Victoria Trafton, whose guidance on being open to the unlimited possibilities available has kept me open-minded and to Dana Stanford (Healthy Mindset Coaching) who, as a friend and coach, has helped me change my mindset so that I allow myself to be happier and more fulfilled. Thank you to those in the Professional Association of Senior Referral Specialists (PASRS) who have been so welcoming and filled with great ideas on how I can help Alzheimer’s families. You have all inspired me to help as many Alzheimer’s families as I can.
Other: Amazon Book Link: https://www.amazon.com/Its-Not-That-Simple-Alzheimers/dp/1735709611/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1606088873&sr=8-2