Mirella

Mirella. Daily Life. A sad, beautifully generous photographic story by Fausto Podavini, showing an intense love, respect and honesty of a wife caring for her husband.

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Mirella was married to her husband Luigi for over 40 years.

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At the age of 65, Luigi began to show symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.

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For six years, Mirella cared for Luigi herself, at home in Rome.

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Alzheimer’s is a progressive degenerative illness that can affect memory, thinking, behavior, and emotion, and is the most common type of dementia.

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Over 36 million worldwide people live with dementia, and numbers are increasing as populations age.

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For Mirella, the everyday tasks of normality became long and difficult events involving both of them.

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Luigi seemed no longer able to understand what the cutlery and food set before him were for, and stopped eating.

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He appeared unable to distinguish between day and night.

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His confused body clock—sleeping during the day, and staying awake at night.

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Mirella’s daily rhythm too began to fragment.

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After five years of the disease, Luigi no longer recognized his wife.

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Luigi died in May 2011, with Mirella and their family at his bedside.

Their story exists to inspire an understanding about our world. All of its mysteries, complexities, heartbreaks and joys found in the changing circumstances of the everyday.

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