Alzheimers and Old Butcher Knives Part 2 #atozchallenge #elderly

“Millie came to visit…

The RAT never suspected. Never suspected a thing. Extra sugar can hide almost anything. The one thing my husband enjoyed was my home baked cookies.”

“Oh well. Thanks for your candor and for the cookie. I need to go now. Have a good day ma’am.”

I tried not to run off the unit as I spit into a hand-i-wipe what I could retrieve of the cookie.

***

“I was on a social call with your mother at the memory care unit.” I absently rubbed my hand through my cropped hair.

“How was mama today?”

“Uh, She was good. She gave me a cookie.”

“That’s nice. She changed her recipe; I stopped eating them.”

“Ahh well yes.” I felt my pulse and looked at my tongue in the mirror. ” Your mama mentioned Miss Millie. ”

“Aunt Millie… she and mama… were very close. They would always laugh about granmama’s favorite butcher knife. They said it was perfect for chickens. It hung in Millie’s kitchen.”

“Chickens??? Can you give me her contact information?”

“Millie’s? She’s in Raleigh.”

I sensed something stilted in her voice. Maybe she knew something.

“She’s in Mount Hope on Prospect… She’s been gone 7 years.”

I had started writing the address down. My eyes bugged out in surprise that my witness or suspect was dead. “How long?”

“7 years.”

“When did her husband die?”

“6 years ago from a heart attack.”

“Was she married before?”

” Umm, yes, but I don’t remember him. He ran off; no one ever saw him after that.”

I ripped the page out of my notepad. I realized people can say and think some mighty far fetched things.

Case Closed / Accidental Death was stamped on my report of a dead husband/ caregiver

 

 

Here’s a link to the first part of this post 

 

Today is day 2 of the A to Z challenge. The letter B

Most of my blogs will be info and anecdotes about the elderly.

I’d apply the letter B to elderly care this way:

Be kind

Be yourself

Be there for your family member

Be honest when you need a break.

Are you participating in the challenge?

What is your theme?

Any writing goals this year?

Alheimers and old butcher knives #short Story #atozchallenge

“Daddy was the main caregiver for mama who has had Alzheimer’s for several years. She never knows who I am when I visit. At home she always had a pattern: She would look out the window, get a plate and arrange some cookies,  sit on a chair and wait. She would do that three times. She then went to her room, turned on the light, took off her robe, crawled into bed and shut off the light. Daddy would shut the door and call “goodnight” through the door.”

“What was she waiting for?”

“I don’t know, but she never ate the cookies. I figured they were for someone else.”

***

The upscale Alzheimer’s ward was nice. That way children don’t feel guilty when they never visit.

She carried herself with such grace and was so polite.

“Would you like a cookie?” She held out a decorative plate.

“Yes, please. What was he like?” I asked her as I took a stale cookie from the plate.

“He’s a lady’s man. I knew that when we married. I thought he would settle down, he never did. He’s  better than Millie’s man though. Mama always told us ‘now girls the two best ways to keep your men in-line are with a sprinkle of that white stuff in sweet home baked cookies or the butcher knife that we keep sharp for the chickens’ necks.

“Hmm. uuuu”  I wrapped the remainder of the cookie in my napkin. I tried not to choke on the cookie in my throat.

“We knew no one would suspect two old gals.” Her smile was sincere as she fingered her strand of pearls.

“Did you ever want to use the butcher knife on your husband?” I was thinking as we talked that her mind seemed fairly clear.

“Certainly not! Millie had rat poison that she saved from daddy’s shed. She said rats came in all types and sizes.”

“Did you ever umm use it?”

 

Thanks for stopping by – you’ll have to come back tomorrow to read the finish of this flash fiction story for the letter B

 

 

 

 

***

 

Welcome to the A to Z Challenge where writers spend the month writing.

I presently work in Hospice and have a love for elderly people (I’m quickly becoming one)

Alzheimers is a hard diagnosis and as it’s constantly changing; its alot like Covid-19.

On the letter “D” I will discuss Dementia which presents in many ways like Alzheimers.

I have found with Alzheimers that a patient can have a little less stress with a few things in place:

Routine – offers stability when an Alzheimer patient feels like the floor has come out from underneath him. Getting up at the same time, eating at the same time helps the body and mind work together.

Diet – A good diet is essential and good fats (for the brain) need to be part of each day. With a generation that is used to non-fat everything this can be a challenge.

Exercise – taking safety into consideration exercise is key. Walking each day and doing some eye hand coordination exercises (make them fun) keep the mind and body in tune.

Safety – A patient can forget they are no longer an avid hiker or runner. Falls are an aged person’s worst nightmare. Identify risks before a fall can happen.

Activity – You patient will still enjoy activities that were once part of everyday life. One patient reads his book about Einstein everyday. He is more engaged in the pictures than the content but that book is an old friend.

Signs – you may laugh at this one but it worked. My male patient kept forgetting where the bathrooms in his house were. He would go in a corner of the garage or in the yard but he always could find the restroom at the store or a park. I put up a restroom sign with a picture of a man and an arrow pointing to his bathroom. it worked.

 

Most people have a family member or friend that has Alheimers. What have you seen that makes it easier to “live” with?

 

 

 

Ripple Effect #poetry #alzheimers

writing in the margins

so much more to say

images collide

cold and cloudy day

filling up the pages

lost amidst the line

start where ended

fretful is my mind

notes are merging

losing the details

misty is the matter

flattened now my scales

 

Alzheimer’s is a debilitating disease for the elderly. People working in the filed have found that music helps retain some connections to life’s memories.

 

 

Freedom Cancelled #poetry #alzheimers

rose bud bloom

decided on its own colour

catching random raindrops

she danced each spring

a calla lily

ivory  water cup

opens like a scroll

makes my heart sing

dry dusty petals

always winter

a ballerina once

no longer remembering

****

a swan song

the seasons changed her dance

robbed of her wings

 

Stuck in 2 places #napowrimo #alzheimers #photography

Simultaneity is today’s Napowrimo topic

The Definition of Simultaneity is the relation between two events assumed to be happening at the same time in a frame of reference. According to Einstein’s theory of relativity,simultaneity is not an absolute relation between events; what is simultaneous in one frame of reference will not necessarily be simultaneous in another.

The silver ringed the moon
uniform, shiny squares line my brain
“it’s going to rain tomorrow”
the empty line was endless
what an unusual glow on my ring finger
monochrome seems to work
“my mind never makes sense anymore”
stars won’t get in tonight’s way
It’s too dark in my mind
all because of the silver ringed moon
***
Poetry doesn’t always make sense but sometimes it helps clarify the questions in your mind.
This poem is written in honor to the Alzheimer’s patients whom I dearly love and respect.

Shy and Sweet #haiku #alzheimers

 

 shy once more

sweet are the years’  memories

what’s his name?

*

one red one black

yesterday’s thoughts blow by

whose shoes are those?

Sharing this set with Ronovan Writes the theme this week being Shy and Sweet.

Alzheimers is a tough disease that robs the present. Walk on yesterday’s path with these folks and try to find the daisies still left to enjoy.

photography © moondust designs

 

The Specter of Old Age #poem #photography #elderly

what is left when aging takes it all???

Decay
The invisible specter
a master of fate
stealing vitality
weakness is the new state
**
clouds of  gray creep in
altering a once comely face
 the mirror an enemy
unrecognizable left in its place
**
 
the crafty meddler of the mind
spoils often the richest chest
scattering knowledge to the breeze
putting memories to the test
**
The specter takes everything
frailty and uncertainty remain
bent, gaunt, colorless, shell
a shadow is cast over nothing
 
I revived this piece from one of the original poems I posted on this blog. I wrote this while working as a private duty nurse for a dear lady of 90. I loved the bits and pieces of the word that I got to see in spite of the Alzheimer’s.  Alzheimer’s is devastating for the elderly and their families – one reason I cherish each moment I have with aging family members. Hug a family member today ~ just because…
 
This poem is selected to share with a wonderful and lively group of poets at Poet’s United. The Poetry Pantry give a weekly opportunity to share a poem you have written – join the fun!

Honey Where Are You? (Flash Fiction#Alzheimers)

I looked today

turned around

What did you say

Did you make a sound

“Honey I love you”

I heard her say

With all we’d been through

My memories at times seem so far away

************************************

After speaking with a dear friend whose wife is captive in Alzheimer’s, I was inspired to write this Fiction for him, for her

Thanks to Monkey Man who weekly hosts our flash fiction in 160.  Amazing what people can do with a few words. Join us

So close yet … (Flash Fiction 55 )

So close…

like a gentle whisper

sadly…

it seems

a chasm away

***

far…

as a continent

yet…

space nor time

cannot divide

***

near…

to feel the pounding

in your chest

but…

unable to give

breath of life

***

far away…

as forever

never…

to be mine

day you slipped away

Go to the G-Man and read the fabulous Flash Fiction on that site.

Photo: Thanks  for “Ausable Chasm” by Dougtone

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