Scenes from a marriage: Alzheimer’s memoir is a study in love and resilience

Dealing with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is heart-rending, not only for those directly affected, but also for their families. In an extract from Memory Serves Me Wrong: A Memoir of Theatre, Love and Loss to Early-onset Alzheimer's, by former actor and theatre producer Ronan Smith, his wife Miriam Brady writes of how the diagnosis changed her life

Miriam Brady and Ronan Smith at home near Lacken in Co Wicklow: ‘There are times I see that spark. He’ll come out with a John B Keane accent and phrase to make me, and others, laugh. He can still perform! It’s second nature to him.’ Picture: Bryan Meade

If I had one wish, I would go back to a day in 1991. It was winter, and Ronan and I were in India on a belated honeymoon. Bangaram Island is one of the tiniest, most beautiful islands in an archipelago in the Indian Ocean. It has white sands, azure sea and a three-kilometre warm lagoon surrounding it, and it became the christening place of my first-ever swim.

As a non-swimmer I had a fear ...