wings and things

Mystery solved!

on February 7, 2015

The other evening I finished work in the dementia house at 7pm (new schedule) and headed up to Anthony’s room in the high care section to say goodnight. As I am not usually there so late, I was surprised to see that the hoist was in his room and that he didn’t have a shirt on. His dirty shirt was off and his clean shirt was on the side of his armchair so I put the clean shirt on him and chucked the dirty one in the laundry basket in his bathroom. Then I put his favourite blanket on his knees and we had a chat.

Me: How come you didn’t have a shirt on?
Ants: I was in a fight.
Me: Who with?
Ants: Those kids again! They tie me up.
Me: See this thing, Ants? It’s a hoist and the nursing staff need it to lift you up and to get you into bed.

He wasn’t too anxious but I could see that he had been. So I kissed and hugged him and said my usual goodbye of “Just going up to the shop to get something for dinner”, and turned the television onto the news which he loves.

Then I left. Usually I say goodbye to staff who are around but they must have been busy somewhere else so I let myself out and drove home.

The following day, Anthony said, “I have to tell you something” but he couldn’t articulate anything that I could understand to begin with, then ….

Me: Were you in another fight?
Ants: Yes!
Me: What happened?
Ants: Those boys tied me up again.
Me: I’ll go and speak to someone about this, okay? Back in a sec.

I went to the nurse’s station and asked M if there had been an incident last night and she said Anthony had become aggressive towards staff trying to get him ready for bed so they had had to leave him alone for a bit. Then she looked at me, her expression full of compassion.

M: It’s okay, darl, he settled down.
Me: He seems to think he is in some sort of boxing ring every night. He is terrified of the hoist; do you think that’s it?
M: Okay I’ll tell the staff. One thing we couldn’t figure out was how he got into his clean shirt.
Me: Oh I did that on my way out.
M: Well that’s a mystery solved!

The following day, during my time with Ants and then my 3 -7pm shift, a couple of staff approached me about the previous evening’s mystery, i.e. Anthony had become feisty when various different carers tried to get him ready for bed so they had left him alone for awhile. Not long after that, they came back into his room to find him dressed for bed and with the blanket on his knees, and calm. Nobody could understand how this could have happened because nobody had seen me come and go, so it had mystified one and all until I clarified that it was me who put his shirt on!

Since then, numerous staff have told me the mystery story. You see there is no way anymore that Anthony can put his shirt on – no way at all. His Parkinson’s has pretty much shut down that kind of ability.

I guess the best thing about this experience is that I now know for sure that the carers in this nursing home really do care about him, and, now that I am a staff member too, I get told stories of how he is when I am not there.

As one of the carers said to me yesterday, “I knew straight away that it must have been you who put his shirt on.” Then she said, “You know, he is absolutely besotted with you. I tried to flirt with him a bit and he sort of brushed me aside and said that you were the love of his life.”

I think it is delightful that so many staff are still laughing at the mystery of the shirt and, today, I will tell Anthony the story too and he will SMILE. And I will laugh all over again!

34 responses to “Mystery solved!

  1. There is so very much about the two of you that I love hearing about. What a beautiful love story.

  2. Anonymous says:

    That’s such a cute story, Julie. It’s nice to know how Anthony is still besotted with you – sweet. What a love story you are writing. I can’t comment without fitting a pun in here somehow. I wonder what other mysteries you have “up your sleeve!”

  3. YOU are the mystery angel.

  4. It was so .. I was going to say funny..but it’s not of course. The way Anthony says it those boys ..they tie me up. Maybe they can help him to understand now they know what the issue is that upsets him… Diane

  5. Terry says:

    Wow, now you are the mystery lady. Keep them on their toes Julie!!! LOL

  6. susanpoozan says:

    You are such a good storyteller, it’s always interesting to read what you write. Glad that Anthony appreciates you however ill he is.

  7. I loved that she couldn’t flirt with him! He was in love with you! ❤ I love it!

  8. I am sitting at my desk, tears in my eyes as your story wafts through my being. It is cold outside. Snow covers the ground, yet here I sit, all warm and toasty because of your story.

    Like Chatter Master, there is so much about you two I love hearing about.

    Thank you for beginning my day with such beauty and loving kindness.

    Mystery angel indeed!

  9. Thanks for the chuckle! Those hoists do look like some kind of scary torture device. Or maybe 50 shades of …

  10. Aww, the gift of laughter. A wonderful story. You’ve an amazing ❤

  11. Judith Post says:

    You and Anthony are so perfect for each other. It’s a joy to hear about you two.

  12. Must make you feel good to hear that you are the love of his life and that the staff know it………it is not so good that he is afraid of the hoist.

  13. I have to say that you couldn’t ask for a better fringe benefit then seeing first hand how well Anthony is taken care of and having that knowledge aleve your worries. I am so happy for that. 🙂

  14. I am so glad he is yours and yours alone!

  15. niasunset says:

    Blessing for you both dear Julie… This is great story in love. Thanks and Love, nia

  16. ksbeth says:

    i love the solution and the laughing.

  17. My Heartsong says:

    That is a “fun” mystery.Sweet, too, that Anthony states that you are the love of his life.

  18. Tiny says:

    You are his best medicine, Julie! And it’s good for you know the staff really cares.

  19. dogdaz says:

    Keep smiling. You are so loving.

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