Wednesday, November 23, 2016

That is Johnny Cash.

"That is Johnny Cash."  As I sat feeding Gary his salad for dinner, he heard "Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?" playing in the background.  Gary not only identified the singer, but said it in a full sentence aloud.  What a blessing!

Immediately following this verbal expression, he saw two slices of watermelon on his plate.  Instead of having his normal blank stare, he looked at it and reached over and picked it up.  He started chewing on the red portion.  He ate in down to the white and laid the rind down on the plate.  This may sound basic, but for a person in the late stages of FTD, this is a miracle. 

I tested him to see if he would pick up his fork to eat the Quiche.  Nope.  I gladly fed him the rest of his meal. They angels had moved the furniture around in the room and I had to give up my chair for the residents to get by so I stood up.  Gary reached for my hand as I stood next to him. 

"How Great Thou Art" was playing in the background I realized that a majority of the residents were singing along.  I watched one of the ladies as she sang, praised and put her hands in a prayer position.  I know she grew up in Gospel-appreciating Mississippi....she was transported there at that moment.  She was praising so deeply.  So were the others.  Gary held my hand tighter. 

I stopped to realize how appreciative I am the day before Thanksgiving.  Even though the following utterances from Gary's mouth made no sense, he is still talking.

In the past 48 hours, he was heard to say, "Gonna testify.
Dive a thousand lengths.  And the one you own. The one you ordered.  Oh, okay. Its tasty.  Howdy.  So close, I can't tell the difference.  This is getting strange."

The music therapist called me today to say that Gary recognized her when she walked in today.  He repeated everything she said and sang along with the songs.  I did not ask her for this feedback.  It is such a stark difference from his blank faced stare that she felt she had to call me.  I thanked her profusely.

God is good. 

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