wings and things

The beautiful people

I remember, a couple of years ago, when it was all new and frightening, dropping into the nursing home to see Anthony one day and ….

…. there were all of these staff at the desk, probably having handover, and, despite my fear and grief, their smiles to me gave me the confidence to shout out “Ah, it’s the beautiful people!”

That was probably the first mutual laugh and I think, since then, the connection between staff, Ants and me has been a lovely thing. I have worried from time to time that my constant presence in the afternoons might interrupt the routine, and it probably does, but the staff are all so fond of us now (yay!) that, hopefully, I’m not in the way too much.

It is an enormous comfort to me that various staff members will come into Anthony’s room and visit him/us just because they want to and because they like him.

These are the most beautiful people in the whole wide world!


Sunday afternoon at the nursing home ….

Last Sunday I began a ritual that I continued today, and will keep doing every Sunday now that I know it ‘works’. I will bring a bottle of really lovely wine in and Anthony and I will partake in sipping thimble-sized servings in massive glasses.

As I have to drive 15 kms home and Anthony can no longer drink a whole bottle of brandy in one sitting anymore (I’m kidding) neither of us can drink very much of course!

Nevertheless the reality of opening the wine and pouring it into glasses brought from home, toasting each other, exchanging memories of parties from long ago … all of this makes Sunday afternoons fantastic.

At one point, this afternoon ….

Me: Why are you looking at me like that?

Anthony: You look particularly beautiful today.

Me: What did you say?

Anthony: Your hair is brushed.

Me: ARGHHHH! What do you think of the wine?

Anthony: Not bad.

Me: Why can’t you ever say ‘it’s wonderful!’ instead of ‘not bad’!

Anthony: It’s wonderful.

Me: Okay, let’s clink glasses for a toast – to you and me, Ants. I love you and you love me and that’s the main thing.

Anthony: Can you just get the animals off the table first?

Me: It’s not a table; it’s your bed and you’re hallucinating!

Anthony: You always say that!

Me: It’s part of your Parkinson’s disease – please don’t worry about it. When you see all of those dogs and cats and calves in the room, try to remember that they are not really there and that you are hallucinating.

Anthony: So how about this baby?

Me: What baby?

Anthony: This one [pointing to his lap].

Me: Okay, Ants, is it Ming?

Anthony: No. Ming isn’t a baby any more.

Me: So who is the baby?

Anthony: I don’t know.

I am astounded that, ever since our niece gave birth to her first baby several weeks ago, Anthony keeps ‘seeing’ babies on his lap. It is so so so weird! But it’s also rather magical and wonderful that somehow Anthony’s PD brain has registered this new addition to the family.

Sunday afternoon at the nursing home; a delightful experience!