wings and things

Ten more minutes

on February 21, 2016

Tonight, I went to see Ants later than usual because I had a party to go to later that evening. I arrived at 6pm to find him in bed, propped up comfortably and watching television. I pulled my chair close to the padded rail on the left-hand side of his bed, muted the television, kissed him and grabbed his hand.

He was very blank to begin with and, because he hardly blinks, his eyes were wide and a bit  confused. Our conversation wasn’t particularly animated because his voice was a whisper

Me: You look like a stunned mullet!

Anthony: You are ….

Me: Are you tired?

Anthony: Yes.

Me: Well I am going to a party soon but you can stay put. Is that okay?

Anthony: Yes.

Me: It’s L’s party; she’s graduated and now has her PhD. You remember L?

Anthony: I think so.

Me: May I change the station to the food channel?

He didn’t respond so I did so anyway and we watched a chef put together a delicious meal.

Me: This is making me hungry, Ants.

Anthony: Is there any chocolate?

Me: Yes!

One of our closest friends, M, provided a massive amount for Christmas and he has only gotten through half of it. So, one by one, I popped a few treats into his mouth because his hands weren’t working. (Around a year ago Anthony seemed to partially forget how to feed himself so, if I were there at mealtimes, I would feed him. We would joke about this and I would exclaim, “Feed yourself for goodness sake!” and he would say, “It’s more sexy when you do it.” I would laugh and laugh and he would smile.

Anthony has now become one of those residents who often (mostly?) has to be fed. But that’s okay because at least he still has an appetite and can still swallow adequately enough that his food doesn’t have to be mushed.

My plan was to leave the nursing home at 7pm, drop in to see my friend, N, on the way to L’s. I told Anthony this a few times as I was saying goodbye to him, then N rang to say she was running a bit late.

Me: Ants, I can stay another 10 minutes.

Anthony:  I am enjoying myself.

Me: Can you enjoy yourself when I’m not here?

Anthony: Yes.

My heart relaxed and I put my hand into his again and squeezed it and he took my hand up to his mouth and kissed it.

Ten minutes later, as I got up to go, he looked at me, his eyes wide, but no longer blank. I looked back, kissed him goodbye, and told him I would see him tomorrow.

Anthony: Ten more minutes?

Me: Yeah we’ve already had those. I love you so much, Ants!

Anthony: I love you too, Jules.

I have been so terribly sad lately that blogging seemed too hard, and responding to others’s blogs even harder, but I think I might have my writing voice back now. I hope so because I really want to write about this experience with Anthony, and Ming too; I really want to re-experience and express how beautiful ten minutes can be.



17 responses to “Ten more minutes

  1. What a beautiful ten minutes Jules. Thank you for sharing them

  2. susanpoozan says:

    You write so movingly of your time with Anthony, I feel for you both.

  3. misifusa says:

    There is a preciousness to 10 minutes which I understand. Sending you love, light and big heartfelt hugs xoxo

  4. tootlepedal says:

    I am glad to be able to read this. Thank you.

  5. Looking back at experiences of life.. whether all good or not; I find that I like to read them. Many of my blogs, especially the early ones are from writings many years ago. (I have had trouble writing and reading the past few months and will be glad to some time in the near future be able to more of)…. ‘life sometimes gets in the way’ !! Diane

  6. judyrutrider says:

    You will treasure these musings in the years to come and we treasure them now.

  7. Terry says:

    Do you realize how many beautiful memories you are building? You are doing the same thing I did. I go back and read my posts from Al periodically. It makes me feel sad, good and smile, and sometimes cry, but I need it, all those feelings. Have fun at your party

  8. You’re ten minutes hold so much love. ❤

  9. Judy says:

    It is so touching how you treasure such simple things. You miss him so much, and when he connects with you – it is gold. 🙂

  10. ksbeth says:

    ten minutes can be everything.

  11. Rhonda says:

    ten minutes can be a lifetime when spent with the right person….I love how you write

  12. Sorry to hear you’ve struggled lately, but how couldn’t you? I’m amazed at how positive you stay, regardless. I’m glad you had a good visit and a great ten minutes this time.

  13. Yeah 10 more minutes can mean everything to a person, or sadly for some in nursing homes 10 minutes mean nothing as they can no longer tell how long 10 minutes it, it can be just that, it can feel like a life time or be gone in a blink

  14. Ten minutes can be so precious.

  15. Val Boyko says:

    What a tender loving time for you. I’m touched by your words Julie.
    Sending you a ((HUG))

  16. Wow, haven’t had time to read much lately-glad he can eat without choking and enjoy the food, especially chocolates! So nice that you can still exchange expressions of affection and love.All the best to both of you.

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