My sister and Mom went to visit Dad after my sister got off work. When they came into his room, he was sitting in a wheelchair, staring out the window. I wonder why Dad was in a wheelchair? I hope one of my brothers take him out for a walk around, on their next visit. I get so worried he will lose his strength if he spends so much time in bed.
Dad has a new room mate. Mom and my sister call him "Speedy" because he talks non-stop. My sister went up to Dad and gently started to rub his shoulders so she wouldn't startle him. She faced him, greeting him with , "Hi Dad". Dad looked at her and said, "Hi Donna". Mom chirped in with "Guess again..." and then he recognized her, calling her by his pet name for her.
Mom brought Dad a magazine and my sister brought Dad a deck of cards. He used to incorporate them in a game he was devoted to prior to going into the hospital. He impressed her with his memory of the suits of the cards. She tested him by asking him what 6 plus 4 was and he responded "10...and 10 more is 20".
She has decided to bring something to interact with and interest Dad, instead of just sitting and chatting. She video taped him as well. We all feel the need to document things with Dad. We want to record everything, as everything with Dad is very precious.
We have decided to make a photo album for Dad with every one's picture in it. When we visit, we can bring it out and see who he can identify, and we can also use it to reference family when we share family news. I think Dad will enjoy just looking through it as well. I think it will keep him company.
As I watched the video of Dad, my first reaction, is Dad's short hair. I don't like it. I got used to his Clint Eastwood look. I think it suited him better. Now he looks like a "patient". His eyes seem so sunken in and his poor left hand...even the knuckles look as swollen as his hand.
Dad is curious. He wants to investigate everything. He loves to tinker and just enjoys the tactile experience and the mental challenge of figuring how things work. I watched his swollen fingers collect the cards and handle them... I smiled when he smiled when he held them. I know he will have fun entertaining himself...or coaxing one of the CNAs to play a game of cards.
Dad used to be a Magician and used cards in his act. Oh how he would entertain us with his magic tricks! I could see that spark in his eyes, as if he was thinking back and remembering how good it felt to hold those cards in his hands...
Tears come to my eyes as I write. I just sense his time is getting closer. I don't want to lose my Dad. It is so difficult to think of him not being in this world. I know he will always be in our hearts, but not hearing his wonderful voice and feeling his hugs.... just breaks my heart.
It just wrenches my guts out to watch this wonderful, kind, gentle, sweetheart of a man, wither away. Despite his example of having peace and calm in the midst of all this hell, just speaks volumes about the man we all love and know as our Dad...