Sitting back into his chair again, taking in the glory of yet another day, Davin wonders about other folks who have cared for family with Alzheimer’s, he just shakes his head in sympathy. Sipping down the last of the lemon aid his head takes on this conversation:
‘Some people may think, ‘they forget stuff and you remind them.’ I assure you, a few weeks in on that premise and you’ll go out of your mind. For some reason my grandmother refused to change her clothes, she would wear the same thing for weeks at a time. When I tried to explain that to her, and even picked out some clothes, she would try to tell me that she has a few pairs of the same clothing. She wouldn’t bathe or cut her toe nails, gads! Those toe nails, whats happening!? She also would not put on a house sweater if she was chilled, she lived in a world of hot and cold, period. The heater was on and off all day long; the crazy thing is, she would talk about how cold it is, put the heater on and disappear outside without a sweater.
Davin would make subtle gestures to the air as if he was speaking to it, but he was so caught up in his thought of explaining the pain of watching someone slowly become someone else, and then disappear all together that he would hardly take notice.
My Pops drank Coke and she drank Pepsi, Pops would say, “hey Agnes get me a Coke, would ya,” her reply would be, “Oh you want a Coke, I think we have some,” and off she would go to the small refrigerator on the patio under the bar. The only soda in this house was Coke and Pepsi, she would return a few minutes later holding a can, “This one?” she would ask holding the can up to him. I would come into the scene when I heard my Pops say, “Nope not that one, but I’ll drink it.” I would walk over to the fridge with her and ask her if she knew which one was coke and which one was Pepsi. She would gripe about how there are so many, and to hell with it, her hand would get waved in dismissal as she walked away. I would still be standing there looking into the fridge where I purposefully filled the top two shelves with Pepsi and the bottom shelf with Coke. I even cut out out the logo’s and names from the boxes and taped them according to the shelves. So my friends, I can honestly say, its way more than just forgetting; slowly as time went on I became dumb-ass and my Pops became bastard or deaf and dumb. To her we were totally nuts and she was completely rational to save every piece of plastic container, candy box, stacks of old papers, and even potato chip bags would get neatly folded into a growing pile. I would clean out the garage every few weeks, filling the recycle barrel with all her precious treasures that she never knew she had, and never knew were gone.
The invisible conversation would rattle on then stop as quick as it started. Sometimes things just need to be released, some creeks and rivers of life never go away, they just keep babbling over and over, and they need to be filtered through. In hopes that at some point they will just be filtered away and become a smooth clean vodka.