Monday, April 28, 2008

More of the Loyal

OK, so I'm back in the city.

The part I prefer only to give the overview of is that Joe the Barber has had a massive stroke and isn't expected to live long. I was up north spending time with him and the family. If you ever find yourself in a similar situation I suggest you hire Joe's girls to help you because no one does this sort of thing with a better mix of compassion, practicality, humor and love.

Serendipitously I found out when I got up there that a. Auntie Blanche was the last person left in her nursing home, which is going out of business, and b. that she was moving on Friday. I was able to eat supper with her on her last night in the old place and visit her on her first two evenings in the new joint. She had a private room and a lot of autonomy in the old home, which was close to where she'd lived for about 40 years. She is on the list for an independent living spot in the new establishment (about a 20 minute drive from our home town) but has to wait until one becomes available. In the mean time she is in a semi-private room in the no independence at all section which is a huge step down for her. At 97 she still walks over half a mile a day, teaches piano and gallivants about the area wherever we will take her. The move was really hard and I was so glad I was able to be there.

It was, however, crushingly difficult to leave her there especially on the first night when she was so unhappy. At the door I started to cry and so did she but when she saw me she rallied and said, "Oh, I'll be OK." I'm sure she will, she can do anything, but she deserves so much better than OK.


  1. Anonymous5:43 PM

    My best to Joe the Barber and Auntie Blanche. I hope I have as much energy and such a positve attitude as she does when I am 97.

  2. Anonymous9:35 AM

    My grandmother was similarly hale, hearty and relatively independent; I can only hope to be (and work toward) being in as good shape. I send good wishes to her and to Joe's family in these difficult transitions.

  3. You are such a good person to be there for these folks. My best to them.

  4. Thanks you guys, you're very kind.