Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I brought clean clothes to Dad tonight, and he is doing pretty good for being 93.
There are days when he is on top of it, and days where he seems to be confused. It is the confusing days that bother him, and he tries to compensate. Sometimes it is with a corny joke, other times it is is with anger and trying to pick a fight.
It must be frustrating for him when he can't remember things.
We all thought it would be Mom who would outlive him. It wasn't to be.
He has friends at the residence he lives at, but it isn't the same as having a spouse.
There are so many times he is alone. The building is full of people, yet I can tell that he is lonely.
When I come to change his meds, he normally would have stayed downstairs to visit or just sit after his meal. The days I come, he scoots up to the apartment, and will just start talking. It doesn't seem to connect, like it is just prattle, but it actually has a pattern. Loneliness. Just to talk to someone in his 'home', no matter what the subject, but to just talk so I won't leave so quickly, hoping that I will find a subject to comment on and have a discussion.
He is lonely. But I don't want to take him from that residence to come live up here where he is closer to me. The few friends he has there are a pseudo-family. He cares for them, and they care for him.
One particular gentleman seems to be the 'fixer'. When Dad has things that don't work well, or he can't seem to figure them out with his diminished eyesight, he calls for Orville. Orville comes and fixes.
The people that live there take care of each other.
I am heartbroken that he has lived so long and has to live in anonymity. Because of what the oldest son has done, what the youngest daughter's propensity for taking things, and her constant requests for money, he has to live in fear that they will find him. One of his grandchildren did, by fluke, by accident. So far we don't seem to have trouble with the children, so the granddaughter may have honored his request and not told them. We continually hold our breath that a problem will occur. So far it hasn't happened. It isn't good to live in constant fear.
So even though I am in contact with Dad almost every week, I don't spend enough time with him. I am not happy with that. I need to spend more time with him. Sometimes I wish I wasn't so busy. I do need to think some things with a rearrangement of priorities. I wish I could take him places that he would enjoy, even with his diminished sight. Macular degeneration is a nasty bit for people to experience. So there isn't a lot he could do simply because of his vision. I really need to think of some things that he would enjoy.
On Thursday, Mike will be picking him up to take him to Fern's for dinner. He is looking forward to that very much, even though it is with reluctance that Mike is doing that.
I hope he has a Happy Thanksgiving with all those people around. Enough to stave off the loneliness for a while.
We are going to a local restaurant for our dinner. It doesn't compete with a homemade meal, but we have so many people coming from so many directions, that having it at someones home is just not logistically efficient.
I hope Dad will have a good day.
Well, it is time to say my prayers for those on my prayer list and then go to bed. Tomorrow is another day.

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