Meanwhile at the VA Dementia Ward

2 people


As I arrive, my guy is about to be wheeled off to a dentist appointment. I offer to take him and the aide says yes, but the head nurse says the aide must take him.

So I go along with them.

My guy is very quiet these day, stoic, dignified, as the disease closes in around him.

It passes through my mind whether he has enough time on this earth to justify a dental appointment, but I push that thought aside.

The aide and I talk the whole way there, and sit together while my guy is getting a small cavity filled by the VA Dentist.

The aide is from Florida and we talk about guns, kids today, getting old, and dementia. Her grandmother, a Native American, cured everything with herbs, until she got Alzheimers in her 80s. They knew she was in trouble when she complained that her fingers hurt from spending the whole day picking cotton, which she last did as a child and as a young woman half a century ago.

Our guy is done with the dentist and we wheel back together, trying to find out if he did or did not get novocaine. He says no, but we are dubious.

Back at the ward I tell my guy the news of the world, though a filtered version. It isn’t clear if a guy who can not move his own hands needs to hear that 17 children were shot in a school.

My Jewish vet buddy is out cold.

I drove home and, as always, check to see if 18 year old cat is still with me. I have to stop and look closely to see his fur moving. Then he wakes and starts yelling at me. He is alive.