Saturday, March 17, 2007

It's a Long Time from Saturday to Saturday

Every Saturday we have corned beef hash for breakfast.  Every Saturday my tablemate says, "I think I will try that hash you are raving about." 

Every Saturday she eats two tiny bites, shudders, and leaves the rest. 

Poor dear has short term memory loss.  What happened years ago she can relate...word for word who said what and whether it was with a smile or sneer.  But who helped her dress this morning, who won the rummy game last night, nor what she ate last Saturday is forgotten.

I long to tell her, "You had hash last Saturday, and you didn't like it.  Nor the three Saturdays before that."  But that would only distress her, and when she is distressed, look out.  She snarls.  That tiny lady can cut you to the quick with a single phrase. 

That tiny lady also orders TWO PANCAKES every pancake day.  It is something she used to do, years ago, order two cakes.  But now, she nibbles the edge of both and is done.  One pancake is enough for most of us seniors.

I shouldn't care.  She has paid for hash and for two pancakes... if she wants to nibble instead of devour them, that is none of my business.  But feel bad to see the food wasted.... week after week.

I am told she has Alzheimers.  Things will only get worse.  She will remember more and more of the past, and less of what is going on around her.

One day she borrowed twenty dollars for a hair dressing.  I passed the money to her and said a silent "goodbye" to it.  But lo and behold, later that week she dropped by and asked, "Do I owe you some money?"  I said she did, and she paid me back.  Wonders never cease.  Her heart's in the right place... it is the memory that falters.


garnett109 said...

Have a great Saint Patrick's Day!

jckfrstross said...

aww its sad when you see someones memory go. Have a great weekend Chuck:)


desannie said...

Charles, I think this is a common thing in ALF's these days.  We have a new lady at our table from NYC.  She's definitely not used to our southern dishes.  Most of the time she either orders something then won't eat it, or she won't order anything and just returns to her room.  It's amazing how much food is thrown out everyday!  At present we are at maximum capacity of 55 and boy are we crowded.  Our director was saying when the facility opened 8 yrs ago there were maybe 10% in wheelchairs.  Now it up to about 80%!  Makes for very tight manouvering!   Annie - who eats TOO much!

tendernoggle said...


pharmolo said...

It's the little things that keep people, like that old lady, going. Have a good weekend, Chuck

monponsett said...

"A friend in need is a pain in the ass"... my father.