Good Ole Dolly Does It Again! - An Alzheimer Journey

It was strawberry shortcake time.  The activity director had taken some of the assisted living residents  strawberry picking a few days ago.  Red balloons were taped to each table. I arrived around noon and had phoned ahead to tell the staff that I was taking Jerry out for lunch. Jerry was sleeping in a chair.  I see a lot of that these days.  Usually, he is sleeping or wandering.  One or the other.  Once he was shown that I was there, he popped up and came running.  Now, let me clarify this.  Running, in Alzheimer world, is a slightly less than slow shuffle.  Yet, his excitement to see me is evident.

One of the aides wanted to take him to the bathroom as a precaution before we went on our outing.  Jerry would not let go of my hand, so the three of us walked down the hall together.  Hate to be so personal, but Jerry is so thin, regular “briefs” (as Bob DeMarco calls them), which are disposable undergarments, do not fit.  So, now Jerry wears the kind that tape in the front.  Just wanted to keep you informed of what’s out there in that department.  Hospice provides these.

For lunch today we went to the local fast food chicken place.  Personally, I’m not a fast food kinda gal, but since Jerry is always eating cafeteria food, I figure he likes a “burger and fries” from time to time.  Besides, this way, he doesn’t have to go into an unfamiliar restaurant where he cannot navigate a chair or a booth.  (He doesn’t quite know what to do with a chair these days.  He usually circles them.)   So, we took our chicken filets, sweet tea, and fries to our favorite park for a picnic.

The decision was made to stay in the car and turn up the oldies country music station, like his daddy use to play.   Jerry’s foot actually tapped to the sounds of Conway Twitty and oomp-pahhed with “One Day At A Time, Sweet Jesus with Cristy Lane ...when all of a sudden, Dolly Parton, in Mule Skinner’s Blues, belted out a yodel.  Jerry’s face broke into one of his “shit-eaten” grins and he actually yodeled!   (Excuse, the language, but there’s no other way to describe it.)  He yodeled, not once, but twice!  It was too good to be true!  Good ole Dolly did it again.  I think I’ll tape that song for another day.