Dementia is a chronic or persistent disorder of the mental processes caused by brain disease or injury and marked by memory disorders, personality changes, impaired reasoning, and the ability to perform everyday activities. According to the CDC, 5.3 million Americans suffer from Alzheimer’s. There is currently no cure for this disease, and unfortunately some risk factors, such as age and genetics cannot be changed.
Josephine is a project that follows the last year of Josephine Bauer’s life as the disease progresses. This series of photographs express the emotional and physical challenges of someone in the advanced stages of dementia. Josephine is my 98-year-old great grandmother who I have spent the last year photographing while being cared for in a nursing home. Just as anyone else who suffers from dementia, this year was filled with good and bad days. I’ve enjoyed the many laughs and tears that came in watching Josephine’s Journey come to an end. Although I struggled to watch my great grandmother take her last breath, she’s taught me that in time everything becomes beautiful.