Author Elizabeth Berg, known best for her many works of fiction, will share stories from her own life and caring for her aging parents at a reading on March 20.
Vashon Community Care is hosting the Zoom event, which opens its new Words and Wine speaker series, focusing on several aspects of aging.
Berg has written more than 30 books, and last October published “I’ll Be Seeing You: A Memoir” to acclaim. In it, she tells the story of how she and her siblings provided practical advice, emotional support, and direction to her parents, who struggled with her father’s Alzheimer’s disease. The couple was married for nearly 70 years. At their children’s urging, they left their home to move to an assisted living facility to receive additional support, while facing many challenges along the way.
In the book’s prologue, Berg says that stories from others about navigating the aging process with their loved ones helped her the most while she and her siblings were caring for their parents. It is in that spirit that Vashon Community Care invited Berg to read from her book and continue the power of shared stories.
“After a difficult year for nearly all of us, I hope that islanders will share in this evening,” said VCC Executive Director Wendy Kleppe. “The event will be enjoyable on many levels. Berg is a master of her craft, so no matter the subject, she is enjoyable to listen to. But issues regarding aging, including dementia, are so important. In the book, she shares insights, lessons and words of comfort for all of us caring for loved ones in their later years. But importantly, the book also has wisdom for each of us in our own aging process.”
Berg has over 4 million copies of her books in print. She has written nearly two dozen novels in addition to multiple short story collections and works of nonfiction, many of which have been New York Times bestsellers. She has also been honored with the NEBA Award for her body of work.
Early in her professional life, Berg, now 72, worked as a nurse for 10 years. That experience served as her “school” for writing, she says, teaching her about human nature, hope and fear, love and loss, regret and triumph and especially about relationships, which are all central to her numerous novels and short stories as well as this poignant memoir.
Registration for the Elizabeth Berg event is free and is open on the Vashon Community Care website under the “Upcoming Events” tab.
Next month from Vashon Community Care, look for its Lives Well Lived speaker series in partnership with the Vashon Heritage Museum and Voice of Vashon. On April 8, it will feature islanders involved with the Medical Reserve Corps