Tuesday, December 1, 2015

I don't know anymore

I don't know anymore. She wakes me up. She wakes me up anytime she wakes up. In the middle of the night I hear “Len, Len, Len”. “Yes Vicky” I venture in my sleep. I know if I don't get up and give her a hug and rub her back and fix her black TV (I don't know why those damned networks can't show their pics on the whole screen instead of half the screen in the middle which makes it all black around the outside which my Vicky can't comprehend, I don't know), I know she'll keep calling “Len, Len”.

She wakes me up in the morning, at five and thirty. “Len, Len” I hear. “Are you getting up?” If I don't answer, which is most of the time because consciousness does not stir that quickly, she comes shuffling to my bed. Poke, poke, “Len, are you getting up? Len, it's time to get up!” poke, poke. Then it's the old pull the blankets off Len trick. That's just plain irritating when your cozy warm and half asleep. I don't know anymore. So we get to the kitchen, we set her down in her chair. “Len, Len” she says, scared as I venture off to get her morning meds. “I'll be right back” I mumble, mumble mumble to myself mostly. I don't know anymore.

We sit here, us personas, trying to type a few words between “Len, Len” and getting up to give some much needed assurance with a hug and a little back rub in her increasingly confusing world. “Len”. “Yes”, as she points towards us. “It's your ear”, or “It's your glasses”, or “It's your knee”. “Yes we say” as we tweak our mentioned body part. That need for acknowledgement, a mind bent on attention. I don't know anymore. Time for some distraction by manufacturing some breakfast. “Are you having some too?” she asks worriedly as I give her an orange neatly sliced into six chunks in a little bowl. “Yes, yes” we say as we point to ours on the other side of the table.

The cats are better at this than we are, us personas. Shucks, she can chuck them off the bed and two seconds latter they're cuddled back up beside her, all forgiven and forgotten. That's just their mom, they've adapted to her ways.

Her leg swells up. It's happened before. They ran a million tests, nothing showed up, it mended on it's own. We take her to her doc, does ultrasound, shows baker's cyst, leg improves. Her arm swells up, bad, lots of ouches. What shall we do? I don't know. We phone her docs, no one can see her for three days. In three days her arm improves, a doc gives her water pills. Next day she's quarterbacking for the Blue Bombers. I don't know anymore.

We tried Home Care, mostly we needed a break. They did their assessment. We were doing just fine they surmised. Recommended a senior's day care, half a day a week, bus would pick her up, had to take her meds on her own though, good luck, better hide your garbage cans. She refused to go anyway, wasn't going to no old folks day care, she wasn't. I don't know anymore.

Grocery shopping day is a joy. We can't push a wheelie chair and a grocery cart at the same time so she uses the grocery cart as a walker and off we trot. She gets a tad tired now and then so we find some convenient cases of straying commodities to settle her down upon for a minute. Take her to the back of the store and make our way to the front, leaving her at the main artery to await our plucking from the cross aisles. So long as she can see us, no panic. You got to watch out for those roving family groupies though, grandparents with hordes of moms and kids and shopping carts can certainly fog the view. Employees with those towering dollies of Cherry Coke can do the same. It's the chance you take, not? Lose a wife much? Found her wandering the parking lot once, never used the checkout, she didn't, cart full of groceries. I don't know anymore.

How long can someone look after a person like this? I just don't know anymore. We asked our doc. Somewhat of a fuzzy answer he forthcame with, an answer bordering on vagueness articulating ambiguity and generality with an emphasis on many-valued logic, supervaluationism and contextualism. Seems like there is no cut and dry time line to the disposition of dementia. In the end it makes little consequence to the inductees as to who feeds and shelters them, so long as they feel well disposed of. So we asked our Vicky “Do you feel well disposed of?” “Yes” says she quietly with that all knowing grin. Well. I just don't know anymore.

Does anyone know? Who knows. I know I don't know.
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