Jerry’s been doing pretty well lately. Today, he was a shaved and dressed up in a beautiful blue striped button-down shirt and khaki pants. When I walked through the door, he was rounding the corner of the hallway. His eyes caught me, he came running, wrapped his arms around me, then they drifted off across the room. Once my arms are around him, I want to hold him tight....but, he was ready to go. He liked the Christmas music playing on the radio and even attempted to turn it up by reaching for the air vents. I knew what he was trying to do. After a while, it becomes easy to read the mind of an Alzheimer person. It was a gloriously beautiful day in New Bern. Perfect for a picnic. So we rode by the local KFC (haven’t eaten at one of those in 20 years) and got lunch to go. The park was the usual one by the water where all the people come to feed the seagulls. I placed a towel on the bench so it would be a little warm and soft for his boney behind, then another towel for a table cloth. Jerry actually was able to maneuver himself into the picnic table which is something he hasn’t been able to do in months. The nuggets worked just fine but he loved the cold slaw and sweet tea.
Lately, Jerry has been carrying around the Bible that the hospice Chaplin gave him. So, today I thought I’d bring his own Bible from home. As we walked across the street toward the water, he tucked his Bible under his arm like he always use to do. Once we sat down again, he pointed to the cover, and said, “Holy.” He began to thumb through it. He randomly stopped on a page where he had underlined some verses from years ago. Matthew 7: 13,14. “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life,and few are those who find it.” Interesting verse. Especially when we come to the end of life...I can see that the gate is narrow and I’m so glad we found it... the only thing left is the best thing.....LIFE everlasting. Thank you God.
After about 20 minutes on the bench, Jerry wanted to walk. There’s a sidewalk that surrounds the park along the water and the seagulls are fluttering everywhere. Jerry, frail, with his Bible tucked, me on the other side trying to keep him stable slowly continued our walk. I could see, up ahead, two rather “thuggie” looking men sitting on their motorcycles at the end of the sidewalk....looking rather....well, ”thuglike” dressed in their motorcycle get up. We hobbled on out in front of them to cross the street when one of them said, “I like your choice of books under your arm. The Good Book.” Jerry held it. I smiled. The other one said, “Yeah. I wish everyone would read it.” Whew! WIth a smile of relief.....“Your right.”, I said.
Like I said, thank you God. Until next time, the journey continues. Christmas is coming.