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Chapter 23 - A Wonderful Journey Along an Unforeseen Path

Memoir of an Improbable Career

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 April 2022

Jamila Bookwala
Affiliation:
Lafayette College, Pennsylvania
Nicky J. Newton
Affiliation:
Wilfrid Laurier University, Ontario
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Summary

The improbability of my career was due largely to a visual disability in the teen years that challenged normal life, threatened higher education. and led to life choices that derailed my career for several years. Determination, hard work, and several lucky breaks opened opportunities to earn a doctorate, become a university professor, and engage in a career of research and student training that brought unbounded satisfaction. This chapter describes consistent themes that characterize my scholarly work: (1) chronic illness (e.g., dementia, osteoarthritis, Type 2 diabetes); (2) family interactions (e.g., receiving and providing support); and (3) psychosocial outcomes (e.g., psychological distress, medical adherence). It also highlights representative studies, key graduate students, and collaborators, as well as several difficulties along the way. Retirement has offered the luxury of additional time and new perspectives to think about my professional past, and, importantly, to determine how I want to pursue my post-career future.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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References

Franks, M. M., & Stephens, M. A. P. (1992 ). Multiple roles of middle generation caregivers: Contextual effects and psychological mechanisms. Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences, 47, 123129.Google Scholar
Kinney, J. M. & Stephens, M. A. P. (1989). Hassles and uplifts of giving care to a family member with Dementia. Psychology and Aging, 4, 402408.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Martire, L. M., Stephens, M. A. P., Druley, J. A., & Wojno, W. C. (2002). Negative reactions to spousal care: Predictors and consequences of miscarried support. Health Psychology, 21, 167176.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Stephens, M. A. P., Franks, M. M., Rook, K. S., Iida, M., Hemphill, R. C., & Salem, J. K. (2013). Spouses’ attempts to regulate day-to-day dietary adherence among patients with type 2 diabetes. Health Psychology, 32, 10291037.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Stephens, M. A. P., & Townsend, A. L. (1997). Stress of parent care: Positive and negative effects of women’s other roles. Psychology and Aging, 12, 376386.Google Scholar

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