Saturday, August 20, 2016

Incident with the butter knife

I came home from Virginia Tuesday evening.  I got home late and went to bed.  On Wednesday morning the activity director at Gary's "happy place" called me.  Normally when they call for business reasons the call starts with "Hi Ada, this is so and So from Sunrise.  There is absolutely nothing wrong."  And then they continue with their business.  It is a nice and comforting way not the scare the hell out of the family member seeing "Sunrise" on their caller i.d.

This time it was different.  She said, "Hi Ada.  This is so and so from Sunrise.  Are you at a place where you can talk?"  Hmm.....this time there was no "there is absolutely nothing wrong."  She started with saying that Gary was okay now but they had an incident at dinner the night before...apparently, while sitting at the dinner table, he grabbed a butter knife out of the caregiver's hand at told her that he was going to cut himself while making a movement toward his wrist.  Of course, they have now taken away his utensils and feed him exclusively.  They have monitored his behavior and questioned him extensively.  No sign of suicidal tendencies. 

I went to see him that day she called and when I arrived he was sitting with the music therapist and had just finished a session.  He had his back to me so I popped around his chair and said hi.  He looked me squarely in the eye and said, "I missed you."  Thank heaven!  He knew me but went back into his sleepy funk that seems to occupy several hours of his day.  I am expecting a call from his Hospice doctor to discuss medications.  For now, he has stopped the public masturbation.  He cannot harm himself. 

His daughter Heather and our friend Joshua also stopped by for a few minutes to visit.  After they left, he repeated twice "Heather and Joshua.  Heather and Joshua."

For the most part he sits (in his new wheelchair) and repeats what he hears and has very little original conversation.  I stopped by on Thursday after work to find him sitting and watching a movie....sort of....he was kicking off his shoes and putting them back on repeatedly.
I chatted at him for a few minutes and rubbed his arms.  He did not seem to care too much except for when I kissed him on the cheek or lips.  He smiled.  That gives me some deep sense of pleasure knowing he still knows me.  It terrifies me that someday he may not.

Last night I attended my five year old grandson's pizza party and today we took him to the zoo in San Diego.  No Gary.  How strange I still find it that he is no longer an active part of my life and activities.  He is in most thoughts however, and that just makes it tougher.  I wanted him to see the elephants and tigers....he would have loved it.

As I rode in the car on the way home I thought of him.  I was numb.  I still am. 

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