Friday, January 30, 2009

Back to July 2006

Even after the trials of traveling earlier in the spring we were on another trip in July 2006. I guess I just did not want to give up on doing what we loved to do. Son Michael and his wife asked us to spend a month at their home in Nebraska. 'It's so much cooler out here in the summer, Mom', was the plea. Sounded good to me. I mean Coastal Virginia can get muggy and hot in July so Elbert and I flew out. It wasn't but a few days until a heat wave hit Nebraska and we were in just as much trouble weather-wise as we would have been if we had stayed home. But, we visited, I sewed a new quilt top, we ate out, had a nice relaxing time of it.
On the 18th of July there was to be a free concert performed in the town park by the Nebraska 43rd Army National Guard Band. It sounded like a nice outing for us but I was worried about the heat.  The concert was to be later in the cooler part of the day so we should be fine. We listened to the music and ate barbeque at the picnic table. Although it was hot I didn't think a lot about it.

After the music stopped we were all standing around chatting with friends when suddenly Elbert passed out and hit the ground. There was plenty of help readily available, with ice packs being applied, pulse taken and so forth. Soon an ambulance came. After he got to the ER (and was conscious again) he was like the old Elbert, joking around with the nurse and telling her that he could outrun son Michael in a footrace. It had been quite a scare and made us realize that he was not drinking enough water during the day and certainly had not been during our outing in the hot sun.

Our trip was getting lengthy. Elbert was sleeping a lot during the day and then keeping me awake at night. He kept calling son Michael by Elbert's brothers name (Robert) and asking him about things that had happened in their past when they were young boys. This sort of thing disturbs me, I am not sure why but it does. I think I am more concerned for the person Elbert is talking to than the fact of it happening. I am embarrased for him. He'd be so upset if he knew that he was making mistakes like that.

I don't know if all this confusion is because we are in a different house, a different state, with things different happening each day. Or is this just progression in the disease? I can't figure it out. I just know that one month away from home was trying for us and for me, especially. I needed my own bed, my own kitchen, Elbert needed some sort of connection to where he was. It looks like trips are a thing of the past for the two of us.


Anonymous said...

Aww Latane, my heart hurts for you. My mother always asks if I have seen "gramma" or where "gramma" is referring to her mother who has been dead for 21 years. She will also ask about my other gramma, dad's mom, who has been gone for 13 years. I just smile and tell her that No, I haven't seen them but if I do I will let them know she is looking for them. Some days she can be very obsinate and insist that she had just been talking to one of them. To that I say, who am I to disagree - she may very well have "seen" them or been talking to them. I guess it depends on what you believe in.
The first time my father thought I was someone else it broke my heart. I will never get used to it but it doesn't hurt as much as it once did. Just the other night at dinner he asked me if he had known me before they "moved here". I had to take a deep breath before reminding him that he was there the day I was born.
To both of them I have been a niece, cousin, sister, daughter, lady who lives upstairs, the lady who comes in a night and does the dishes...oh ya, I am a person of many personalities apparently. But, I have learned to laugh at most things, if I didn't I would spend too much time and energy crying. Although I know in time, that neither of them will remember me I take some comfort in knowing that while I am able I will do my best in caring for them. When I was diagnosed with cancer in 2003 they did what they could to help me. Keeping them at home for as long as possible, making sure they are safe, and well cared for is the least I can do. They are my parents and I love them.

Anonymous said...

oops - I thought my name would show up - its me Nancy. sorry