He called me to his room this morning. I didn’t think much of it, because I am so used to it by now. Most probably he has a new business plan in his head, or he is worried about his money somewhere, or his bicycle….or maybe it is his sore toe.
So as I started making his bed, absolutely his way! Seven blocks of the blanket on the left side and seven blocks on the other, and then the brown blanket exactly up to my elbow on each side….while he sat on his chair watching my maths! He wasn’t saying anything yet, so I gave him time. He reached for his drawer and fiddled inside, and I pretended not to see. I kept myself busy with his laundry. These have to be documented in his little black book! What I take out of his room, and then I have two days to wash it and return it in the same order!
He was watching me, just checking if I am not taking some of his stuff out without him noticing! In his hand was his book! This book kept him ‘sane’ and me. Some days when he lost track of his world, this was the book we grabbed! Some days when he forgot why he was living with us, the book helped. His name was on this little brown book. “Buddy Wright’s Book”
I drew maps in this book. Where am I? In King Williamstown? In Pedi? In Bathurst? And then I took out the book, and after a while with lots of patience I could persuade him to look in his book. Check the map, Buddy…..here is where you are, George! And then he would study the map, forgetting about the frustration and confusion in his head…and the anger towards me for telling him lies! And long after that, he will look up, and I would see the color of the blue in his eyes, returning, the glaze gone now. And he would say…Lynne, why didn’t you say so in the beginning, I know I am in George!
And names, and telephone numbers, notes. Who came to visit? When? How did I get here? Things I need to remember… All these were written in his book, over a period of 9 months! His life was in this little book…some of it in my curly handwriting, and some in his shaky handwriting…trying to spell words as best as he could to read again.
And then he showed me the message………
Shar’ his daughter came to visit yesterday, and he had his book out the whole time with a list of prepared questions for her. She answered every one of them as good and as carefully as she could. Always careful. Some days he was happy with her answers, some days not. He made his notes. She was looking after all his stuff, she is keeping his bicycle safe….his daughter!
And she brought him a bag full of goodies. He loves that! Treasures every bite, and maybe I will be lucky some day and share a piece.
But he leaned over….and showed me the page. A message from his daughter.
“Love you lots Dad….from Sharon .”
“Why will she write this in my book?” he asked. “Why didn’t she say so?”
I had a lump in my throat, and tried my best to sound normal. “Maybe sometimes it is easier to write what is in your heart than to say it out loud.
“Look at me, why do I feel like this now?” Buddy said very emotional.
“Maybe because you don’t say it either…maybe you must also write it down for her…”
“And you?” He asked.
“Buddy, I have a very special place for you in my heart.”
“Yes.” “A very special place in my heart.”
“I never heard that before, so maybe that means it is a good thing, to have a very special place in your heart….” Buddy answered, with his blue eyes so bright.
I had to slip to his bathroom quickly….and when I came back he was still reading his daughter’s message with a softness in his face.
So I walked out of the home, only to find Joy getting her cigarette ready, outside. When she saw me her face lit up! She had something to share with me!
She forgot all about her cigarette, (which never happens). She has something to show me! I followed her to her bedroom. Very proud she stroke her hands over her new duvet on her bed! “Look what my granddaughter brought me! A new duvet for my bed! Isn’t it so beautiful?” The light was shining in her brown eyes, and she basked in the idea of being a special grandmother! She walked back to her cigarette outside, and telling everyone she met along the way about her wonderful granddaughter!
This is the message for you! Little things, they love…
Little things they treasure
A little love from you…..when you visit!
because they know…
because they remember…….
Note: The Jura Care Village has received permission from all residents written about in the Jura Care Blog, mostly from their families. By living in the Jura Care Village, you are in no way required to become part of the Jura Care Blog.