Written over the course of more than a decade, “I don’t have time for this!” took its final form after Katherine retired from Carleton University where she had taught for more than two decades.
The book provides a roadmap for the journey into aging, illness, and dying that we will all travel—ourselves and the people we love. With gentle persuasion and moving stories from her family, her clients, and her years as a hospice volunteer, Dr. Katherine Arnup shows how to overcome the fear of aging and loss so we can show up for the challenges in our lives.
Based on memoir, interviews with caregivers, research, and stories, “I don’t have time for this!” avoids a preachy tone common in books on the topic. “We will all go through this in our lives,” Katherine reminds us. “Everyone has either already lost their parents or is going to at some point in their lives. That’s just a hard fact of life. And of course, each one of us will face our own death.”
“I want people to know that they’re not alone,” Arnup says. “When you are faced with caring for someone you love, you feel as if you’re the only one. It’s a very difficult time, especially if you still have children at home.”
Although the subject is a challenging one, Arnup includes moments of humour and joy throughout the book. “It’s so easy for us to get caught up in all the details of caregiving, and forget to notice the moments of joy,” she tells us. “Those moments will sustain us long after our parents are gone.”
On May 3, Katherine celebrated the book’s publication at the annual Hike for Hospice, and later at Patty’s Pub, where dozens of friends and fans shared stories, enjoyed refreshments, and listened to Katherine read from the book. Katherine was also interviewed by Robyn Bresnahan on CBC’s Ottawa Morning show. An excerpt from her book was chosen as an Editor’s Pick on Next Avenue, an NPR online site targeted at people over 50.
The book is now available from Chapters and Amazon online, at independent bookstores in Ottawa, and at the Ottawa Public Library. Katherine will be doing readings and book signings in the US and Canada this Fall.
In addition to writing, spending time with her two grandchildren, and volunteering at the May Court Hospice, Katherine is a life coach, specializing in life transitions, including aging, caregiving, and end of life issues. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.