A quiet celebration. A big milestone. # 80. He was very subdued and silent when we gathered in the private dining room electing to keep that head down, eyes closed... to shut out the fact that something was required of him to be aware of his surroundings, to be a part of a world that he can no longer figure out.
The dancing devil doll that Shirley gave him brought him out of it for a bit... The thing was loud and silly and such fun, lights flashing in it's cheeks, hips and arms twisting to the music 'Do You Love Me'. Enough to bring a smile to his face and a glimmer of fun into his eyes.
A birthday card from his sister in law that yodeled also grabbed his attention.
The lap throw daughter Marie had made for him with a fox hound, hunting horn and fox on it seemed to get some appreciation.
There was a pretty shirt and socks, and balloons, too. And, a cake Shirley had made.
The food was good. I mean, that man does love to eat and he wasn't about to turn down fried chicken, green beans and potato salad. He even had room for a piece of chocolate cake and ice cream. By this time he was tiring, his tummy full.
I asked grandson Ken to help me get him back into the Garden (the memory wing where he lives now) We sat him in a chair in the living room. A few moments later as Shirley and John walked by she threw up her hand and called, 'Hey Dad'. 'Hey Girl' he responded 'What you been doing today?' The birthday celebration had already escaped his memory. But, it will live on in our minds and hearts for a long, long time.