Thursday, July 30, 2009

In A Rush

Back to the hospital in Atlanta. Betty's not doing well, and we need to be by her side. I will try to sign on again from the laptop this evening, but let me leave you with this very funny snippet my friend Helga from Australia sent me.

I'm afraid this happens to me all day long, though in different ways:


This is a story by David McClure from the Dallas News Community Opinion page.

$5.37. That's what the kid behind the counter at Taco Bueno said to me. I dug into my pocket and pulled out some lint and two dimes and something that used to be a Jolly Rancher. Having already handed the kid a five-spot, I started to head back out to the truck to grab some change when the kid with the Emo hairdo said the harshest thing anyone has ever said to me. He said, "It's OK. I'll just give you the senior citizen discount."

I turned to see who he was talking to and then heard the sound of change hitting the counter in front of me. "Only $4.68" he said cheerfully. I stood there stupefied. I am 48, not even 50 yet - a mere child! Senior citizen?

I took my burrito and walked out to the truck wondering what was wrong with Emo. Was he blind? As I sat in the truck, my blood began to boil. Old? Me?

I'll show him, I thought. I opened the door and headed back inside. I strode to the counter, and there he was waiting with a smile.

Before I could say a word, he held up something and jingled it in front of me, like I could be that easily distracted! What am I now? A toddler?

"Dude! Can't get too far without your car keys, eh?" I stared with utter disdain at the keys. I began to rationalize in my mind. "Leaving keys behind hardly makes a man elderly! It could happen to anyone!"

I turned and headed back to the truck. I slipped the key into the ignition, but it wouldn't turn. What now? I checked my keys and tried another. Still nothing. That's when I noticed the purple beads hanging from my rearview mirror. I had no purple beads hanging from my rearview mirror.

Then, a few other objects came into focus. The car seat in the back seat. Happy Meal toys spread all over the floorboard. A partially eaten doughnut on the dashboard.

Faster than you can say ginkgo biloba, I flew out of the alien vehicle. Moments later I was speeding out of the parking lot, relieved to finally be leaving this nightmarish stop in my life. That is when I felt it, deep in the bowels of my stomach: hunger! My stomach growled and churned, and I reached to grab my burrito, only it was nowhere to be found.

I swung the truck around, gathered my courage, and strode back into the restaurant one final time. There Emo stood, draped in youth and black nail polish. All I could think was, "What is the world coming to?" All I could say was, "Did I leave my food and drink in here?" At this point I was ready to ask a Boy Scout to help me back to my vehicle, and then go straight home and apply for Social Security benefits.

Emo had no clue. I walked back out to the truck, and suddenly a young lad came up and tugged on my jeans to get my attention. He was holding up a drink and a bag. His mother explained, "I think you left this in my truck by mistake." I took the food and drink from the little boy and sheepishly apologized.

She offered these kind words: "It's OK. My grandfather does stuff like this all the time."

All of this is to explain how I got a ticket doing 85 in a 40. Yes, I was racing some punk kid in a Toyota Prius. And no, I told the officer, I'm not too old to be driving this fast.

As I walked in the front door, my wife met me halfway down the hall. I handed her a bag of cold food and a $300 speeding ticket. I promptly sat in my rocking chair and covered up my legs with a blanky.

The good news was I had successfully found my way home.

The Animal Rescue Site




Anonymous said...

Oh meine der andere Bill, I am so sorry to hear that your Dear Betty has taken a bad turn. We all just want the best for our loved ones, whichever way it may go. If they can't recoup and be better, we don't want them to suffer long. Yet as I have experienced, just when we think it might be over, they come back to us. I suppose for maybe some unfinished business or message to leave behind. Pay very close attention, she may be trying to tell you something important.

My thoughts and best wishes are with you and your family.

I,like you, when things are really tuff, try to find something in the world or about life to lighten the sadness, to find something to smile or get a giggle at. Without this we would be pretty somber most of the time.

I also can totally relate to the Taco Bueno incident in so many ways. Things like that are happening to me, it seems, on a daily basis now. I know that those with diagnosed AD have a problem, when people say, "that happens to me all the time." But AD or not, it does happen, and if we don't see the humor at these times, we have a tendency to just want to stay isolated, at home, curled up with our blankey, afraid to go anywhere, concerned, what silly thing we are going to do next and maybe even make a fool of ourselves.

As Dr. Seuss says, "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind."

Share those foolish times with those who matter and have a good laugh. I'll bet they will have a few to share of their own.

Sending happier thoughts your way, Becks

Bill Craig said...

Danke, Becks

(I'm gonna teach you German and Der Erste Bill's gonna teach you his Scottish! *S*)

I know first-hand about the "coming back" - if even for a very short time. Believe me, we're watching her like hawks, for ANY sign of recognition, and today the physical therapist told us not to "molly-coddle her", but to STIMULATE her and even try to make her mad if we have to!

If you've read the blog you know the latest, but what I didn't tell you is that PT had her sitting on the side of the bed and were doing range of motion exercises with her.

A word about our nurses (NOT the one I wrote about earlier): They are being so accomodating with visiting hours, and aren't holding us to strict times. We can back to her room pretty much anytime we wish, and there are usually four of us at her bedside, so she'll hear some familiar voices, and we encourage her to cough, (because she isn't moving and has been diagnosed with COPD) to clear her secretions.

This hospital, Atlanta Medical Center, has an award -winning "Stroke Team" that responds tot he ER as soon as they are paged overhead.

What I have NOT mentioned, is that Betty has a HISTORY of strokes in her family and has lost several siblings to them.

About the time she had her stroke a brother died of cancer, and of course, she could not attend his funeral.

We feel that our Betty is in VERY good hands!

Thanks Becks, for your note and everyone for your thoughts and prayers!

Disclaimer: The family has given me permission to write about her in my blog, because she IS a part of my life.

Der Andere Bill *S*