Core Team Profile: Anne Scott
Belfast, Northern Ireland
On Success: Preparing for the future is something I feel I have successfully navigated.
Current Projects: Working on my second Sizzling Bacon book.
Top of the mornin'!
It’s Anne, all the way from Belfast, Northern Ireland. I am a single mom who has raised five children, the youngest of whom is still at home. We also have Effy, our Golden Labrador. I was diagnosed with cerebrovascular atherosclerosis, and lived with that for three years until neurology changed my diagnosis to chronic small vessel ischemia around 2014. Six weeks after that, I received an additional diagnosis of Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis. Twelve months after that, Fibromyalgia.
Because I still had children I was caring for, I had the added responsibility of making arrangements for their future care. I had my own arrangements to figure out as well. Since my youngest daughter was only five at the time, her future care was my main priority. Preparing for the future is something I feel I have successfully navigated.
Before my diagnosis, in addition to raising my children, I was also a driving instructor and working as a part time counselor for Childline. After my diagnosis, I joined a dementia working group that focused on changing policies, practices, and stigma around dementia. I am currently a member of DEEPNESS dementia media and have been asked to be one of the directors. I have also become an author! My books are being used in Wales to teach children about dementia.
When I worked with Childline, I advised children to write about their emotions and experiences. After my diagnosis, I took my own advice and started writing poetry. In fact, one of the first poems I wrote, Leaving You, was published in a book called, Silent Voices.
The one thing I would love to see is an educational program based around dementia, emotional health, and well-being for children. For children to become empathetic, you have to show children how to be empathetic and understand what someone else is going through.
I started writing books to help my own daughter understand what dementia is. Since she liked it, I decided to send it to a publisher. The books are all about the brain and how it works. It uses snowflakes, Sizzling Bacon, and other fun characters to explain the symptoms that can happen and some ways to deal with them. Although the book was originally written for children, it also works for adults as well.
I think that everybody needs to work together. That’s why the book was written for both children and adults. I’m not dealing with dementia on my own – my children are dealing with it too. I wanted the book to include everybody – because everybody is involved with dementia.
The first book dealt with early symptoms, but there was only so much I could fit in. So, I’m working on a second book to cover some more of the symptoms in a child friendly way. It will be called, Sizzling Bacon and the Bumble Bee.