The Notebook IRL: Loving Husband Reads Diary Excerpts To Dementia Stricken Wife To Help Her Memory

In a real life story that is similar to the plot of hit Hollywood romance movie The Notebook, devoted husband Jack Potter, 91, visits his wife Phyllis, 93, every single day at the care home where she resides in Kent.

Phyllis suffers from dementia and so in a bid to help keep her memory alive, Jack reads her excerpts from the diary he has keep throughout their 70 years of marriage. He shows her photographs of their holidays and happy times together and helps her to remember those experiences. He said; “Whenever I turn up to see her she stretches her arms out to hug me – she is very affectionate – despite being so unwell.”

The couple met at a wartime dance in October 1941 and married 16 months later in 1943. After their first meeting, Jack made a note of the event in his diary and has been writing down their shared memories ever since.

The Notebook
He was serving as a Royal Engineer at the time that they met and after the dance, he returned to his barracks and wrote in his diary;

The Notebook1
“very nice evening. Danced with [a] very nice girl. Hope I meet her again.”

The Notebook2
Just recently, the Potters celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary at the care home in Rochester, Kent and even received a card from the Queen. They were presented with flowers and cake and Jack said he was “overwhelmed” by the amount of people who turned up to celebrate the occasion with them.

Jack still keeps note of things he wants to tell his wife when he sees her.

Recalling their first meeting, he said;

“I remember it like it was yesterday the first time I met her – she came up to me and asked me to dance. She was an excellent dance partner and an older woman – I thought she was wonderful and I still do. It was definitely love at first sight, everything fell into place. It was uncanny really…I remember going home and scribbling down that I had met her in my diary, it sticks in my mind because I suppose it was a life-changing moment.”

The couple never had any children, so it was just the two of them. He worked in the building trade before retiring in 1982 and she worked as a typist. He said that their lives had always been together and were “everything a person could want.”

Their story is a little bit similar to 2004 film, The Notebook, in which the character Noah tells his wife Allie the story of how they first met, were forced apart and then found each other once more. Allie suffers from dementia like Phyllis and in the movie she actually wrote the story, which is told in flashback form and instructed her husband to tell her it so she would “come back” to him.

Source: Daily Mail

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About Sheniz Raif

I am, and think I have always been, a writer. I’ve been scribbling stories since I was old enough to hold a pen and thoroughly enjoy using my words to make people laugh or inspire them. I love going to gigs and am a professional groupie for a couple of awesome bands. I am an avid fan of socializing, football, film, and refusing to grow up! I’m also a proud member of the BODO UK team!