Saturday, July 1, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 06/30/17: Mom's Outing, Mom's Dark Time, Food Lab and Rib Eyes and Going Uptown

1.  The morning broke with a flurry. Christy went over to Kindred to help Mom get dressed. Paul came over to Mom's house and mowed the lawn. I took the car down to the glass shop to have the windshield replaced. I returned home and watered outdoor flowers and deadheaded those that needed it. Indoors, I cleaned different areas of the house.

Shortly after 9:30, Paul went over to Kindred and wheeled Mom over to her house and to Christy's next door. We all agreed that Mom might find it enjoyable to see how things were growing in her flower beds and vegetable plots and to see the many roses, lilies, snapdragons, and other flowers in bloom at Christy and Everett's.

I think Mom enjoyed this outing. After about an hour and fifteen minutes or so, Mom started to grow tired and Paul returned Mom to her room. I picked up the car shortly after noon and joined Mom at lunch time. I helped her into her wheelchair and cut up her chicken fried steak. She ate about half of what I cut up along with some potatoes and gravy and carrots. Around two o'clock, she asked to go back to bed. I rang for help for this task. I hugged Mom. She told me not to fall on her and I complied. I left as Mom fell asleep.

She seemed content.

2. I returned to Mom's room at 4:30 and her mood had darkened considerably. Her stomach hurt. Somewhat aggressive demons of dementia had wormed their way deep into her mind and she was angry that I had been out late last night, that she had worried if I were ever coming home. She was angry that I hadn't been to see her, at one point telling me it had been four days since I'd been there. She wondered why I didn't call. Mom told me, for the first time, that she was scared. I held her hand and stroked her arm.  When I got out of the chair to move aside when a nurse or an aid came in, she begged me not to leave.

I texted Christy to tell her Mom was having a difficult spell. Christy joined me and Mom and we listened as Mom called us knuckleheads for canceling the eye appointment and tried to answer her questions about why she couldn't return to her house to live.  Mom's change of mood from earlier in the day unsettled us, even though, intellectually, we know that things can change quickly for Mom.

Christy left to go fix dinner and I left a little later. I hugged Mom and told her I'd be back in an hour. I returned in an hour and Mom told me that she was sure I was never coming back. I reassured her, held her hand, and listened to other things she had to say. Christy also returned and slowly Mom began to relax a bit. Her fears seemed to subside. Her tone softened. Eventually, she told Christy and me that she wanted to go to bed. She asked us to leave.

A moment later, she asked me to come back, to stay. An aid was going to help Mom get situated better in her bed and possibly get under a sheet and Mom asked me to stay until the aid arrived.

The aid came in the room. I was all right for me to leave. Mom and I hugged.

 As we ended our embrace, Mom had some last words for me:  "Clean your glasses."

3. I spent my time away from Mom in ways I thoroughly enjoyed. I got in a decent walk after I left the car off at the glass shop and another when I returned to pick it up. In the afternoon, I played food lab in Mom's kitchen. I thought sliced cucumbers might taste good with the leftover mayonnaise and sour cream and lemon dressing I made for the Mexican cole slaw the other night along with the do it yourself taco seasoning I made. I experimented by adding leftover rice and then I wondered how the leftover tilapia would taste in it and I added some rice vinegar.   I liked it: cucumber rice tilapia salad with Mexican cole slaw dressing and rice vinegar. I also began to imagine how I could turn Thursday night's pasta dish, now that it has been refrigerated, into a pasta salad with Kalamata olives, capers, more lemon, and, possibly, feta cheese.

I also enjoyed the perfectly grilled rib eye steaks and baked potatoes Christy made for dinner. Christy and I capped off the evening with a relaxing meet up with Ed at the Inland Lounge. We had a great time gabbin' with Ed and it was fun to see and talk with the Lounge's proprietor Cas. He had plenty of opportunity to shoot the breeze. It was a slow night in uptown Kellogg.

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