Lots of Smiles - an Alzheimer Journey

Today was so good.  It took about two hours to complete an interview with a representative from the VA.  He was there to appoint me fiduciary of Jerry’s funds.  I never really knew what a fiduciary was.....mainly, it means....I get sent to Guantanamo if I misuse or co-mingle funds.  No problem.  Just glad it’s final and that help is on it’s way.

Afterwards, he wanted to meet Jerry.  I suppose it was to make sure he wasn’t some fictitious character that I made up.  Don’t know why I would go through all this if I was making it up.  But, I understand.  There IS a lot of fraud out there and he couldn’t have been nicer.   Course, once he met Jerry, he was convinced.  (The picture above was taken several months ago. Look!  He's actually making eye contact.   He definitely looks different now...but I  prefer to post some of his handsome pictures.)

We “ran” out the door for our outing, when the hospice nurse met us in the parking lot.  She had come in, but all the residents on the front porch pointed to us headed to the car. The hospice nurse was so sweet.  She didn’t want to make Jerry come all the way back inside, so she took his vitals while he was sitting in the car.  It was hot, so he wasn’t very responsive.  She was MORE than kind and gentle with him.  I swear...these people are angels.

Jerry and I had a nice little outing.   Since I couldn’t find a parking place on the main street in front of the ice cream shop, I drove over to the little convenience store next to all the yachts  in New Bern.  I crossed my fingers and told him to stay in the car while I ran in to buy goodies.  He’s definitely declined, so I don’t think he could have escaped even if he wanted to.  Once I piled a heap of junk food on the counter (snicker ice cream bars, a jar of peanuts, and a coke), I handed the guy my card while I peeped out the front window.  Jerry had undone his seatbelt and was in a frozen position, holding the buckle out in front of his face.  Uh-oh!  Still......he couldn’t get his body coordinated enough to get out.  We drove on over to Union Park and found a bench to sit on.  The weather was perfect, sunny, with a little breeze that kept things pleasant.  Ahhhhh.  It was so perfect..sunny...... ice cream bars and a coke. ( I think I just said that twice.)  We stayed for a good 30 minutes, then took a little walk. In case you’re wondering.  Our “walking” is a very slow shuffle and doesn’t go very far.  But, hey.....it’s still a walk.

When we returned to the facility, I noticed that the front porch was empty.  We walked in and could hear the singing.  A  group from a local neighborhood was singing to a packed house....the place was bursting with smiling energy from Hello Dolly.  Loved it!  While Jerry doesn’t respond like he use to....it looked like he heard it and he raised his eyebrows...so I think he liked it.  Don’t ever underestimate what it means to visit (or sing) at a nursing home.  The smiles are beautiful.