I am troubled because Auntie Fern has been failing the past couple of weeks. How does one deal with the health of a woman preparing to celebrate her 100 birthday? The situation has given me good reason to spend more time with her and try to help her regain some strength.
Funny how things happen. I try to help her - and instead she helps me -- to smile and to laugh.
For instance, on Monday she was so ill that I called the clinic for advice. The nurse found a Tuesday afternoon cancellation and Fern agreed to see her doctor. He needed to know how weak she had become.
When I arrived to pick her up, she confessed that she had not had the energy to shower.
"I can help you do that anytime," I offered.
“That's alright,” Fern smiled and tried to focus on my face. She is legally blind in her only eye, having lost the other eye some years back to an infection.
Then she seemed amused by something.
She chuckled, “I did the PTA this morning, so I’m good to go.”
I thought 'what the heck is the PTA' and then raised my voice so she could hear my query. (She seems to have gone nearly deaf in the past few months, too.)
“Oh?” She seemed surprised that I wasn’t party to the information she was about to share.
“That’s when you are only able to wash your Pits, Tits, and A-double-s.”
(Then she blamed her late sister Jennie, our gram, for teaching her such nonsense.)
We laughed and laughed!
She surprised me when she summoned the strength to hold my arm and walk to the car. No wheelchair for Auntie Fern.
16 hours ago