Sundance RV Resort
I know I haven't blogged much this season. I've had mixed emotions this time of the year. As many of my blog readers know, my 95 year old dad is under Hospice care. I just didn't feel like having our annual Christmas party or for that matter other events we were invited to attend. This is the first year in my life, I haven't sent out Christmas cards.
We've accepted the fact that Dad will be leaving us in the near future. He's told us that he's ready. The saddest thing being around him is that his mind is pretty much gone. He's packed everything in his apartment and is waiting for "them" to come and take him. This past year he thinks he's being deployed on a carrier in the Navy where he spent most of his life. Other times he thinks he's on a cruise ship sailing to different ports. All of these are good memories, but I don't think Dad's ever thought of anything that wasn't a positive attitude.
I've heard how people complain about assisted living facilities, but the Garnet has such caring employees, you'd think they were caring for their own family members.
Last night my sister, Sherry, and her husband joined Bill and I for Christmas eve dinner with Dad. Hospice had advised us that we should go to the Garnet rather than have him with us at our home as it would confuse him less. He talked about a lot of things and some of them we couldn't figure out. Some I don't think I could even post on the internet or big brother would be around to check on what he's saying.
Today we went over this morning to see him. He has no idea that it is Christmas. I know there was no reason to even think about a gift for him, but I did anyway.
I had talked with the activity director, Victor, and suggested that he liked to take things apart and put them together. A great example is the number of pieces about 10 electric razors have when they are taken apart.
I found on Amazon, a Lego set to make of Trevi Fountain. Dad has traveled the world and been in many more countries than Bill and I. The back of the box, showed Trevi Fountain in Rome. The front of the box showed what it would look like built with Legos. He opened the box and offered me some of the "candy". Legos didn't mean anything to him and he thought he had a box of candy. I had been so hopeful that I'd be able to reach him.
Now comes the best part of my Christmas. He looked at the back of the box and recognized Trevi Fountain! He then opened the book and there was a booklet with a picture of the aqueduct and the Spanish steps. All of a sudden it triggered something, and he began telling Bill and I all about his travels around the world. He described his visit at the Vatican where he met the Pope. He could remember all of them. He kept jumping around from one country to another but remembered the things he did and saw.
We visited with him longer than usual as we were enjoying listening to him tell us his adventures. By the time we left he had remembered that Sherry and Dave live near us.
I know in all reality this will be the last Christmas with him, but it couldn't have been a better day.
There's also another reason that this Christmas means a lot to me. Bill has struggled so hard with his hearing. Last week I finally convinced him to try a different hearing aid place. He's been to many and has a drawer full of hearing aids. Our government will pay to have lap band surgery so a person can weigh and eat less but Medicare won't pay for hearing aids. He hasn't been able to hear even with the phone on speaker phone. He can hear noises, but can't make out the words.
Bill's first thing he did with the hearing aids was to call his friend in Florida. He always struggles with trying to piece together what he says using the speaker phone. Bill talked for almost a half hour. He could understand every word. I'm so happy for him. I can't imagine what he's been enduring all this time not being able to hear. With Sherry and Dave in the back seat last night, he could hear everything that was being said.
Polly and Vern invited us up for Christmas dinner with nine others. Vern had a turkey breast on the grill outside and a prime rib in the oven. Boy did it ever smell good when we entered the house. The meal was perfect and the evening couldn't have been any nicer. It was a very long and enjoyable day.
Look at the beautiful wooden boots wind chime from Polly and Vern. Polly liked her gifts too.
Today was truly a beautiful day and that big beautiful moon made driving home at night not so bad.
When we were driving home we had a call from daughter, Shay. Bill was driving so I told her we'd call back when we arrived home. I think she was surprised to hear Bill make the return call. Bill hasn't been able to hear the grand kids on the phone before today. He spent a lot of time enjoying talking on the phone to each of them.