Last Evening


fiddler-on-the-roof-800-75 Last evening I was invited to see a new play at the Wagon Wheel Playhouse in my home town. It was called Fiddler on the Roof.

 

This article is about the 1964 musical. For the film, see Fiddler on the Roof (film).
Fiddler on the Roof
Fiddler on the roof poster.jpg

Original Broadway Windowcard evoking the artwork of Marc Chagall, source of the title.
Music Jerry Bock
Lyrics Sheldon Harnick
Book Joseph Stein
Basis Tevye and his Daughters by Sholem Aleichem
Productions 1964 Broadway
1967 West End
1971 film
1976 Broadway revival
1981 Broadway revival
1983 West End revival
1990 Broadway revival
1994 West End revival
2003 UK tour
2004 Broadway revival
2007 West End revival
2008 UK tour
2009 US Tour
Awards Tony Award for Best Musical
Tony Award for Best Score
Tony Award for Best Book

Fiddler on the Roof is a musical with music by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, and book by Joseph Stein, set in the Pale of Imperial Russia in 1905. It is based on Tevye and his Daughters (or Tevye the Dairyman) and other tales by Sholem Aleichem. The story centers on Tevye, the father of five daughters, and his attempts to maintain his family and Jewish religious traditions while outside influences encroach upon their lives. He must cope both with the strong-willed actions of his three older daughters—each one’s choice of husband moves further away from the customs of his faith—and with the edict of the Tsar that evicts the Jews from their village.

The original Broadway production of the show, which opened in 1964, had the first musical theatre run in history to surpass 3,000 performances. Fiddler held the record for the longest-running Broadway musical for almost 10 years until Grease surpassed its run. It remains Broadway’s sixteenth longest-running show in history. The production was extraordinarily profitable and highly acclaimed. It was nominated for ten Tony Awards, winning nine, including Best Musical, score, book, direction and choreography. It spawned four Broadway revivals, a highly successful 1971 film adaptation, and the show has enjoyed enduring international popularity. It is also a very popular choice for school and community productions.[1]

 

I enjoyed it very much. The entire play was a little longer than others. The first break was not until almost 9:30; which most breaks are around 8:30, but it was worth it. I love the voices and the acting.

One of the main stars, which if you look at the above photo, I am talking about the one with the beard. I was fortunate enough to get to meet him after the show. It turns out that he lives less than an hour away. Gee, I wonder if he is married, lol.

Upon leaving I was so humiliated. I seem to have issues when I stand and walk very far. I was leaving my seat and had made it to the front double-wide doors, when suddenly I felt like I was going to fall.

I have had to deal with this more lately. I never fall, but right there in front of hundreds of people I tipped forward, running into this poor older lady’s back. I am sure my face turned beat red. She turned and looked at me and thankfully didn’t cuss me out; but instead smiled. She was probably thinking that woman had too much wine.

Yes, you can purchase wine only during these plays but I am not allowed to drink because of my Diabetes. I didn’t say anything more to her than how sorry I was. I couldn’t explain. I guess I didn’t want her to know that I had medical issues.

I had to have help from my friends to make it down the hill to the car. I tried to erase the embarrassment away by thanking God that my friends were kind and didn’t mind at all walking an old lady down the hill, arm in arm.

Chapter 26


What I didn’t expect to happen when Al moved into the nursing home was guilt. Guilt surrounded me. Everywhere I went, every thought I had; guilt was there eating me alive. I went to see Al almost every day for the six months he was in there.

I ate lunch with him each time. Sometimes I went for supper or breakfast. I had been in the nursing field for over twenty years so I made several non-routine visits. Everything seemed to go well the first few of weeks.

Lots of attention was showered on Al. Staff coming into his room more than I had had dreamed, but then things calmed down, and then the storms started to brew. When Al went into the nursing home he could still walk with his cane.

Before Al had entered those big, front doors he had already spent three months here at home doing physical therapy with the staff from this nursing home. Al complained a lot from pain but I thought those old words, no pain, no gain.

I requested that he have no more therapy once he entered the nursing home, but somehow my feelings got over looked and therapy became a constant in Al’s life for the next several weeks.

What I didn’t realize, but was beginning to recognize was the more Al did his workouts, the more tired he became. His bounce didn’t come back like it does for the rest of us. With lots of studying and learning I discovered that after a certain point of having MSA, the muscles do not bounce back. They have the reverse effect. They begin to crumble.

Of course, at this point I did not know that Al had MSA, (Multiple System Atrophy). I was under the assumption  he had PD, Parkinson’s Disease. Al began to sleep more but I thought this was due to the illness.

What I learned though was staff quit paying attention to him. They came and helped him for sure, but the extra time was not there anymore. He was becoming bored. With his mentality at age 10, these older folks that reside in nursing homes just plain weren’t keeping Al’s interest.

He did enjoy Bingo. He won treats which he kept stored up in his room. I always told him, ” You are storing these like a squirrel stores nuts for the winter aren’t you?” He would laugh and soon I discovered he was eating them at nights along with  his bedtime treat staff gave him.

Now I always kept Al’s dresser full of treats. Anything from Reese’s cups, Twinkies, Granola bars, about anything he requested, and of course pop. It didn’t take long to figure out what was going on when the staff began to let me know of Al’s weight gains.

I had seen too many deaths in my career and always believed that if I was going to get a terminal illness, it was better to be on the heavier side. I know, this sounds crazy. We are supposed to eat lean and stay fit.

But I saw things in a different light. Knowing Al had PD, I wanted him to be as happy and content as he possibly could. I should just come right out and say it, I spoiled him rotten.

I knew what PD could do to his life and so I was determined to make the rest of his days full of smiles. In the end, I was very thankful that Al had gained weight. It saved his life for a little extra time.

So, back to what I was talking about. When I noticed Al was getting weaker and learned the information I did, I demanded therapy quit working him so hard. They did listen to me and turned to an  infrared machine that they would place on Al’s sore muscles and help them to feel better.

They spent more time with him working his fingers to help them relax and stay flexible because of the nasty tremors. Al seemed to draw into himself a little more each day. I began to carry more guilt at how I was to blame for him being there, even if he did want to go.

I was about to go to the head of the company and make a request that I wanted to take him  home for good. Before I could carry that thought out, staff came to me wanting to talk.

” I am afraid this is not working out. With Al’s mentality and his attitude changing I think he would be better off somewhere else.” I agreed and thought how easy she had made my own speech for me.

What I didn’t know is just in the changes he had already made it was going to be a little harder to care for him at home than I thought. Thankfully, some caring staff members opened my eyes to waivers. I had never heard of these before.

After careful explanations about the several waivers there were I decided on a particular one. The process began but it took three months, so Al had to remain there longer than I wished. The waiver I had chosen stipulated that the patient had to be in a nursing home in order to qualify for this certain waiver.

It was worth it though. When Al came home in June of last year, there were programs in place that allowed Al to still go out in the public with the aid of wheelchairs and ramps. When Al came home he was tired. I could see how much weaker he had become since entering the nursing home.  Part of it was due to being more restricted in a room than the outings and activities that he and I had shared here at home. The other part was the illness.

Chapter 22


The test was scheduled for the next day. Al asked a lot of questions but I assured him it was not going to hurt. I explained how they were just going to take a fancy picture of him. He seemed content with that.

I was there when the specialist arrived. He set everything up and explained the procedure to  Al and me. After the wires were attached he begin doing his magic. When it was all done, the doctor showed me what he had suspected.

Al had some brain damage happen from the seizure he had. He said that I should not be surprised if in the near future Al would begin to show Parkinson’s Disease as it was so strong in the family.

Al didn’t seem to really understand and I explained as briefly as I could. I didn’t want him to get this disease. I had seen the effects of it with three different family members. The specialist unhooked everything and left.

The next day Al was released and we went back to our normal routine of living. I tried to brush the doctor’s words to the back of my mind. Why worry when he showed no signs of it.

About three months went by from that day at the hospital. I started noticing Al was tripping over himself. He fell a few times getting in and out of the truck. I tried telling him to be more careful, to walk slower and not to be in such a hurry, but in the back of my mind, those stored words were starting to surface.

The next time he fell out of the truck was the last time. He not only cut his legs but he was limping. I called the family doctor and made an appointment to take him in. After seeing Al, he sent him to a sports doctor.

The new doctor did x-rays on Al’s legs and he had torn ligaments in both knees. That was the last time Al rode in that truck. We went car shopping and got something that Al could get in and out of with ease.

Nothing stopped for him. The car made it easier but then a slight tremor started being seen in Al’s one hand. It went from there to the upper arm and then on the same side the leg started to twitch.

Once again I called the doctor. After checking him he thought it best to send Al to a neurologist. He told me he was pretty sure Al had Parkinson’s Disease. I smiled at Al as the doctor spoke but inside I was screaming, no, no, no.

The appointment took a couple of weeks. In the mean time Al didn’t have the tremors too often. When he did have them I could see they bothered Al. He always told me he was trying to get them to stop but he couldn’t.

I started researching this nasty disease. Although I had been familiar with the word and had seen some of what it can do, I needed to know more. I didn’t like what I read. I kept reading the same thing over and over, no cure and gets gradually worse. The worst I read was there was no cure and Al could suffer for years with this.

Upon arriving to the appointment he had Al do different tests. Strength and walking, squeezing fingers, and gait. The doctor diagnosed the final words Parkinson’s Disease. He explained about exercise and how Al could benefit greatly from it. He explained how the tremors may spread from the one side to both sides. He said the head could shake or the lips tremor.

I shook his hand and thanked him for the insightful information. Everything was going to be different from now on. My family members had terrible tremors and one of them ended up in a wheel chair. I was going to make sure Al lived life and had as much fun as he could possibly have while he could.

There was nothing really prescribed for Al at that time. There were no special changes that we made. We just waited and dealt with what he was given each day. The tremors did continue. They moved from the one side to both sides.

He didn’t have the lip tremor and he didn’t drool. Other than the shaking of the hands and legs he led a pretty active life. I continued to allow him to go to his adult day care. I wanted him to not have to think too much about the doctor’s visits.

He was scheduled appointments every six months to see if the disease was progressing. Only then did we actually voice the word Parkinson. Al still went on the outings and seemed to be having a good time.

I then started hearing him complain about his hands. I had noticed they were shaking a little stronger than in the past. He was mad because he was beginning to lose control over them. He was beginning to spill things he was trying to hold.

I noticed that he would sit on his hands to get them to stop shaking. For some time that did seem to help. The more he seemed to struggle the more I began to spoil him. I took him  out to eat all the time.

We went to the flea markets and shopping. What ever clothes he wanted I tried to buy. We looked for coca cola items even harder. Life was still pretty good when I look back at it now.

He then began to complain of chest pains again. I took him back to the heart doctor and his exam showed him that Al was just stressed out from the shaking. He started prescribing calming medications. Before too long had passed, Al was on Parkinson’s medications along with antidepressants and also  the calming medications.

Feeling The Love


Maybe when you are more within your walls you stretch farther for the little joys. Or it could be that since my father passed my faith has grown. What ever the reason I cried tonight. Not because of sadness, but because of love and joy.

Al has really been struggling with tremors. One of the  differences  between Parkinson’s Disease and M.S.A. with tremors is that with PD, tremors tend to fade away in the final stages. With M.S.A. tremors become worse.

This is where Al is right now. Brushing his teeth is a good example. Try to picture this. The battery operated toothbrush is loaded and running. It is in your hand. Your hand is in mid-air. The tremors are so bad that the toothpaste is being shaken off the toothbrush, and the hand can not be stopped. Therefore the once independent act of brushing your teeth is now over. You cry because you are so embarrassed. You can remember when you always brushed your own teeth with no one’s help. This is just one of many things that Al struggles with.

But today, although he had bad tremors all day long, he still thought of me. Through stuttering and a very soft voice he was trying to explain to  me that with the help of school teachers in Day Program he had made me a gift.

A gift? for me? from my brother? Oh wow, I was excited and I did nothing to hide my excitement from him as I dug into his back pack to find the prize. When I pulled it out, Al raised his head just long enough to see my face.

I beamed at him and I put my arms around him and told him, ” I love you so much Bud. This is the best gift I ever got. I will treasure it always and I will put it where I can see it every day.”

I saw a slight smile. I meant every word I said to him, I will treasure it.

 

Open your eyes that you might see

What God has gifted you and me

It doesn’t have to be a three-story house

It can even be smaller than a little mouse

For although the body can no longer move

The heart is still feeling and in the groove.

Written by , Terry Shepherd

08/20/2013

Here is what he made me today.

dream

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

book4

On a Sunday Afternoon


English: Culver's frozen custard deserts at th...

English: Culver’s frozen custard deserts at the West Milwaukee, Wisconsin location.

I was just thrilled today, let me tell you. You would think by now the facility knows how picky I am on Al’s looks with cleanliness, even more so when I take him in public. Today I went and picked him up. We ate lunch at Culver’s so he could have ice-cream.

His tremors seemed fairly under control. He did pretty good eating without spilling too much. I was watching him eat and I  noticed his fingernails. On one hand all four fingers were lined in shall I say yellow-brown?

I thought back to when the staff member was helping him to get in his wheelchair. She said, I caught Al in the bathroom digging.

Alright, I thought, thanks for letting me know that. But watching him when he ate made me lose my own appetite as I realized what the colored nails were from. He had not been cleaned up.

Grrrr, I just wanted to scream. If I have told them once I have told them too many times to make sure his nails are always clean. I don’t know of there is really any truth to it but Mom used to tell me that if there was dirt under my nails when I was a kid that I could get pinworms.

As I sat there I noticed his fingernails not only had the crusties they were also turning dark gray, and then they would fade back to light gray. Maybe I shouldn’t be concerned, because the nurses aren’t, but I am. What is causing this to happen? It has been going on for a couple of months now.

Al’s speech was really hard to understand today. I think part of it is PD. Another part could be the increase of pain medications. His lips barely moved and even after I asked him a couple of times what he said, I gave up. I mostly didn’t know what he was saying. I just agreed with what he was saying but felt awful for not understanding and just playing the game.

He did have one point in our outing where he told me about a dream he had last night. He said he woke up and saw someone sitting in his recliner. He said he didn’t know who it was and then they got up and left.

After lunch we drove to the lake. I think he enjoyed it but it didn’t take long before he was falling asleep on me. He apologized when he woke up and I told him not to worry about it. He said he was tired, so I took him back. When I got him in his room I went to the nurse and spoke to her about the gray nails. She made no motion and said nothing. She just looked at me. I also told her about his dirty nails and how I wanted those cleaned up.

I think  Al had fun, or as much as he could. We did have some choking issues three times on eating french fries. Maybe he won’t be able to eat those anymore, I don’t know. I  would hate it because he loves them.

I left him sitting in his recliner where he wanted to watch some sports, but before five minutes went by he was asleep. I patted him on the arm and told him I was going to go so he could rest and he looked at me and said, I’m sorry, I just get too wore out.

Although I love to take him out, I can see it is a real hardship on him. I told him I loved him and would see him in a day or two, unless he wanted me there for him earlier. I asked him what is he supposed to do if he needs me, and he looked at me with a weak smile and said, have the nurse call you. I said “Great answer” and then left him as he closed his eyes again.

Here are some photos I took while we were out to the lake.

boatbeachcampgroundcemetaryfishingpink tree

Path of Life


A very dear friend of mine has shared this song with me. I love that some of you have come to my Facebook and asked to be a friend of mine. It gives me a chance to reach out and chat with others who may not suffer with PD. We all have problems of some kind. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but there has been a time that you need your friends surrounding you. A shoulder to cry on, someone who will listen to your woes.

I cried like a big baby when I listened to the words to this song. This is something that I try very hard not to be selfish, but darn, it is the most difficult thing I have done in many years. To sit back and not think of what I want.

I am weak and yet I have days where I am stronger than my worst enemy. But there is someone stronger than me. His name is Al. I have the opportunity to sit behind this screen and pour out my heart to you. Who does my brother have? He has his God. When I was cleaning his room the other day I was surprised at the wear and tear that is showing on his Bible. He uses it every day, several times a day.

This book that he goes to for comfort has torn edges and turned back pages. I imagine that if my brother goes before me I will treasure this Bible along with my hidden memories. I will pick it up from the shelf it rest upon and I will  hug it to my bosom. I will cry for missing him and I will cry for  his release from pain.

This song reminds me that each day Al lives he is nearing his wonderful journey home. To even write that sentence I felt the worst stabbing of pain. It branded my heart and sent tears to my eyes without my even realizing.

To lose someone is something we have all experienced. We send flowers, we show our love by going to the funeral home. We send cards and give hugs and words of encouragement.

But when it is all over, we sit in our own corner of life and we are forced to begin the healing process or we die inside. For me I am trying to start the reality of his journey ahead of time.

I have been in denial for a long time. I listen with intense burning at others words. I light candles for hope of a cure. I pledge myself for the cure of PD and I beg others to pledge along with me.

I look back to when my own Daddy was dying. I talked to every non-profit organizations. I walked for Light The Night for Leukemia. Yet God wanted my precious Daddy and he left this earth anyways.

This is the fight that is within me. The fight to never give up until the last breath is taken. This is where my pillar stands tall and the light on my candle shines brightest. I am going to lose this game, I know it deep in my pit. But until that day, that moment, that second arrives I will not give up. I will always have a glimmer of hope.

I will look at the heavens and cry for help. I will continue to come to my friends here at WP for added fuel. To God it is a blink of an eye in time, but for me it has been 57 years so far. If it be thy will Lord please let me have a few more years. But if you want him more than I do, I promise I will step aside and not stop you, but the tears will fall and I will be on bended knees and my heart will hurt.

https://www.facebook.com/michaeljfoxfoundation?v=app_448952861833126&rest=1

Type Terry in the Search Views and please vote for my brother. Help cure PD. You can vote once every hour until the end of this month.

http://www.gratefulness.org/candles/view.cfm?l=eng&c=18304661

Please go and light a candle in Al’s name, a group you will find with his name. Please light the candle in Al’s journey.

candle3path of trees

I Don’t Want to Walk Alone Through This


Alone in the Middle

Al has been dismissed from the hospital and back in the nursing home. There is nothing more anyone can do for him. They upped his nitro to the maximum does in order to try to keep his heart at rest.

Al’s heart is suffering from the tremors. He has CAD, and it is getting tired. On the way back home from the nursing home it hit me what the doctors had said. I started shaking so bad I had to pull off the side of the road and I cried like a baby.

I cried for my selfishness in the thoughts of  losing my brother. I cried for all Parkinson’s patients. I cried because I feel so helpless. The emergency push to get approved for him to come home has been given. The state called me today while I was at the nursing home. Now it has to be signed by a different area of the State and then a Caseworker is put into play.

I want him to pass a way here at home. I don’t care how hard it is to take care of him, I will not let him die in that nursing home or any other.

The doctor ordered a bed alarm for him. The nursing facility called me at the hospital and said they don’t want to use it because he will get mad at them. I told them, “This isn’t for your convenience, this is to alert you when Al stands up.”

“We just don’t want to use it.”

“Sorry, I don’t want Al to fall anymore than he is.”

“He has only fell here once.”

“Bullshit, he has fallen at least four times that I can think of immediately.”

“He didn’t fall two days ago. He was found on the floor.”

“Oh really? What was he doing on the floor?”

This argument went on for about five minutes and then I said,”I am his guardian and I say use it. No more arguing.”

His heart is suffering and he kept breaking out in clammy cold sweats all day. Many partial baths were given. When we got back to the facility an aid asked Al if he had to go potty. I guess he told her no. Five minutes after they laid him down on his bed he wet his brief, clothes and bed. When the aid found out he had done this she looked at me and said,”I just asked him five minutes if he had to use the bathroom and he said no.”

I told her it is the PD and not Al. I apologized but said,”He is wet and he needs to be changed.”

She got some help and the two changed him. The put a pad between the bed covers and Al’s bottom. She said she had a shower to do so she would change the bed later. To me this was wrong, but I let it go, he was dry for the moment.

He cried because he was embarrassed about wetting himself but I told him, “You can’t help it bud. If you could I know you would get up and go to the restroom. Please try not to feel bad.” I know my words fell on deaf ears.

It has been a bad day. I didn’t receive good news at all. Al life is being cut sooner than later. I am tired. Al is tired. I am sick to my stomach and I keep feeling the tears at times. I love my brother. I know he is suffering but I don’t want to lose him.

If anyone wants to help another PD patient not have to go through what Al does, please go to this website. Look under search or view entries and find Al’s photo with my name under it. He is in his famous red coca cola shirt. Here is the link.

http://terry1954.wordpress.com/2013/04/07/16-the-michael-j-fox-foundation-for-parkinsons-research/

You can vote one time every hour. Please help so others don’t have to suffer like Al  is.

 

 

(16) The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research


(16) The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.

Please go to the page and vote for Al and me………….

Please go to View Entries. Al is in a red coca cola shirt. My name is under the photo

Daily Prompt; Comfort Zone


The Gentle Grasses of New Zealand

The Daily Post, DP,http://dailypost.wordpress.com

What are you more comfortable with — routine and planning, or laissez-faire spontaneity?

I am weird. I am the one who looks through the new calendars in January. I look to see who’s birthdays fall on what days. When are the holidays?

If I could book my life year to year, I would be quite content. There is a large part of me that finds great comfort in the word routine. Surprises I enjoy if it is my Birthday.

I really believe this is something that God has been trying to teach me for years. I call it getting set in my own ways. He describes it as be ready at all times.

For me not making too much effort in being flexible I am thrown a lot of curve balls. Even a habit has formed from this. I look in the mirror at the reflections I see. Watching my own picture show. Next I pray, then I come to you, my friends for support.

Does this make me stronger or more wimpy? In my opinion it doesn’t make me wimpy. It allows me to grow stronger. I still go to God and you for help and support. But I am always shocked at the new challenges thrown at me more often than not, and I remain standing.

Al has Congested Heart Failure, Parkinson’s Disease and is mentally challenged. If I wasn’t strong I don’t think I would ever consider letting him move back home. With God’s help I can do it along with help of caregivers.

We are much stronger than we give ourselves credit. Look at the man who is crushed under a car. No one around is there to help him. You take quick action and race to save his life. Without thinking you lift the car up and a way from him.

Yes, strength is within us just waiting to come out. But until it is needed we continue to live in our daily comfort zones, well at least I do. Routine is comfortable to me indeed, but I can still stand strong when I need to.

A Special Day


Al

Today is a day full of clouds and drizzle. There will be no sun for a couple of days at least. After getting my doughnut tire put on my car yesterday I went to the tire shop this morning. For very little dollars they fixed the tire and put it back on the car.

I was set to go. Taking off I got about two miles down the road and put on my turn signal to turn and the blinker was going double time. I thought oh no now what. I turned into an Auto Zone and sure enough they found one of my turn signals had gone out. Is this my week or what?

I bought the new bulb and had to go next door to a gas station that works on cars and pay them a few more dollars to replace it. These newer cars are so packed under the hood, you have to take out a lot of things just to get to the blinker bulb. I remember the eighty models and prior, I could do myself.

Finally, all four tires were on and good, turn signal was working, I was ready to go about my drizzly day. I went to the business where I take my water classes. I went to tell the teacher that I probably won’t be able to return to class until this Friday. My eye is much better but still not completely healed.

They were glad to see me and asked me about Al. I left them to finish their class and as I was getting ready to leave the building I remembered I had a card in my purse. I received this card last week and it said it was good for this particular business.

I had changed insurance companies on January 1st, and then received this discount card. When I showed it to the lady at the desk, she said this is your lucky day. I thought well I need some luck because all I have been doing is spending dollars on the car.

Come to find out this card is a perk to go along with my new insurance. When she ran it through the system, good news. It entitled me to a free membership. Wow, no more paying monthly dues, I could do anything there for free. I wanted to do somersaults! I was so excited. Yes, I can handle this good news.

I thanked her and went on out the door. Last thing on the list. Go see Al. I walked in and his fingers were full of blood. I looked his face over but saw no new picked areas. I asked him about it and he said he had a nose bleed this morning. He told me his sugar levels were low at the morning check and they had to do it again.

I went and talked to the nurse and she said that he did have a nose bleed. They didn’t know from what. I suspected the dry air. Evidently Al did have a picking party somewhere in that morning. I asked the aid to please clean his nails.

She said his sugar was 87 and that was perfect. For me, that number is not perfect. All I want to do is sleep. I work better at the 120 number. I can’t figure out why his sugars are on the low side but will keep an eye on them along with the nurse. I don’t want him going into a coma through the night.

I asked Al if he wanted to go out to lunch since I didn’t get to take him yesterday. He first said no, it was too close to lunch time and his tray was probably already made. I told him I bet he could go. So off to the nurse again. Al and I ended up leaving and going to his favorite place to eat. Yesterday and today he was and is having good days. He is walking with his walker and no wheelchair. Yeah!

When he walked in, everyone said hi Al, how you doing? We have all missed you. Oh you should have seen Al’s face. The biggest smile just stretched from ear to ear. He talked to each of them. We sat down. Al couldn’t get his coat off so I helped. It took him quite a while to sit on the stool, and then we ordered. He ordered his favorite meal. A breaded cheeseburger, french fries, a medium diet cherry coke and sugar cream pie for dessert.

I ordered a tenderloin with no bun and some cottage cheese and a small diet coke.

He was so involved with talking to all the waitresses that I got a little lonely. So I looked to my side and an elderly man who looked just like my grandpa that has passed on was seated beside me. Even Al told this guy that he looked like our Grandpa. I will admit it was a little weird. Same height, same build, brown eyes bald on top, and age marks on his head almost identical to grandpa’s. Has he came back to visit? Gave me the shivers.

Anyways since Al was chatting, I picked up a conversation with the gentleman. We talked like we had known each other for years. I do seem to talk to elderly people with ease, so this made a plus. He was very interested in Al’s tremors he was seeing, so we talked about Al and what Parkinson’s does. This gentleman was probably in his 80′s. I had seen him in here eating before but had never had the chance to talk to him.

He was so nice. He asked what I did and I told him I am a caregiver and he asked how long I had been taking care of my husband, and I explained it was my brother. He said that I was a good sister.

We chatted for about a half an hour while Al ate and talked. He finished his pie and when Al was ready I helped him put his coat back on. I turned to pick up the check and the gentleman I had talked to said this is my treat. I said oh no you don’t need to do that. My brother is a big eater. He said I want to, so he paid for our meal. Can you believe that? I couldn’t. No one ever pays for my meal. It is usually me that pays for their meals.

I thanked him a couple of times and he patted my shoulder and said that I was such a nice young lady. AW that was so sweet. He called me young. We all said our fare wells to everyone and Al wanted to look around since they sell coke products. He was doing really well. I was so impressed and then he went down.

His legs just couldn’t take that much walking. I told him I was sorry. I told him that I should not have let him walk that much. He told me that his legs were just rotten and they didn’t want him to walk. We both laughed as I helped him stand back up. He wanted to go back to the nursing home, so I took him back.

He said thanks for taking him, and I said it was my pleasure. I told him I loved spending time with him and he smiled at me. He wanted to rest so I said good-bye and I came home. I made it home with no flats, no burnt out signals. I did good.

God is good. He gave Al and I a great day together. These are the days I will treasure for ever.