Al, my brother, is suffering so much every day with shrinkage of his leg muscles from this nasty Parkinson’s Disease. Some days I wish I didn’t know how to spell it or say it! He is living on pain pills almost around the clock now. I am worried about the effects all of this will have on his stomach, so when I take him to the doctor Wednesday, I am going to bring this fact up and see if there is something else we can try that is more potent and less times per day. I am always hoping for Al, even though I know we are in the comfort care zone. I want each day to be as pain-free as possible.
With his muscles not knowing any other choice at this time, the shrinkage is its goal. The less Al walks, the more the muscle shrinks. With this brings less stability also. When he arises from a bed or couch. If he has been sitting for a while outside, or in a car, or even on his scooter, it causes pain and freezing. Al is strong-minded and he is teaching me to be more like him in strength. He fights this disease the best way he knows how, by crying, cursing, and telling his body what he thinks of it.
Al wants to die, because he wants to live so badly. As he sees in his own eyes, that he is fighting a losing battle, then he chooses to die, and as I watch him suffer more each day, I want the Lord to take him home.
Yesterday, I surprised him. He loves cars, vintage cars, race cars, not as much as Coca-Cola, but pretty darn close. I took him into a flea market, and he spotted the red right off the bat! He started to walk over there, but could not make it. He stood with tears in his eyes, looking at me, saying I can’t walk. We didn’t have his scooter at this time, because I thought they had them there for use, but I was wrong.
I saw another lady who was running a booth, and she was in a scooter of her own, and beside her booth was a wheel chair, and she had seen Al’s predicament, and brought it to him to use while he was in the building. I thanked her so much, and although Al said nothing, I knew that he appreciated it also, as he could now go to the red section, coke.
At this point of Al’s life, I can not help spoil him when I can. I am being a two-sided coin, as one part of me is teaching him I won’t tolerate too much whining and negativity, and the other side knows his condition, so if I have the means I will let him have what he wants.
I wheeled him over to a red box, that once opened, showed a beautiful Coca-Cola radio. The dealer of the booth plugged it in for him, and Al looked up at me with those baby blue eyes begging without saying a word. I said, if you want it, you can have it. I received the biggest smile. I had made his day, and he had also forgot for that moment he had Parkinson’s. He purchased another trinket of coke items, and there was not much more in the store that he was interested in, so we left.
We drove to a new restaurant that neither of us had ever been to. The Quaker State and Lube Restaurant. I knew inside that Al would love this, and I think he did, but he was in pain again, from sitting and standing and being shuffled around. He looked around at the decorations, but didn’t say much. He didn’t cry, but he did ask for pain pills.
Although, I am not much into cars, only that I can drive them, I am glad that we went. The decorations on the walls, and suspending in air were pretty awesome. The menu was the cutest thing. They had changed the names of foods we recognize into terms that matched the decor.
The food was fabulous, especially the stack, onion rings. They were perfect. Al had chicken tenders, with french fries and coleslaw, and for his drink it was very similar to the fair’s Lemon Shake-Up. He ate every bite!
We finished our meal and I paid the bill. I stood up and exited the booth, and Al followed. When he stood up, he fell though. He started crying, not from pain, but from embarrassment. I helped him up, and saw no cuts or blood, so I helped him to the auto, and we went home.
I know that he had a good time, but the ending was not what I wanted nor expected. It was just getting to be too much for him anymore. He is getting too weak, and the more tired he gets the more the body freezes. I am so glad I got to take him, and wonder how many more times I am going to be able to place that big smile on his face with those baby blues looking up at me begging without saying any words.