Meanwhile at the VA Dementia Ward

The Split Rock

My guy is continuing to succumb to the paralysis brought on by his disease. He can still speak, but it’s more of an effort each month.

I was showing him the photo book I am working on all about Mary Cummings Park, where we met.

One of the photos is of a boulder that was somehow split in two.

I asked my guy if he remembered seeing the boulder. He wasn’t sure.

I then asked him if maybe I should glue it back together and his mouth crinkled up into a grin.

If somebody can smile life must be worth living.

One rule I have is to always talk to these people as grownups. There is a tendency by even very caring people to talk to the dementia patients using baby talk, both in terms of topics and voice.

I always talk to them as real people, in terms of topics and tone of voice. I just may not bring up messy politics.

I bring the same sense of humor that I use on other grownups and kids.

These people respond well to being treated with dignity, respect and humor. As we all do.

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