Like a Fart in a Frying Pan

I care for a priceless lady who is pleasantly demented. Her mobility has decreased significantly. She marvels that she wants to get up and move but her knees just sit there and do nothing. She stares at and then smacks them and says, “Come on knees!” The way she does that, I keep expecting themContinue reading “Like a Fart in a Frying Pan”

My Body is a Sagging Tent

A dear friend, 6 significant years younger than I,  contacted me feeling woebegone. She’s about to turn forty and she feels lousy. Her eye-sight is suddenly failing, her metabolism is on strike, and her children – all under the age of 8 – think they are smarter than her despite her doctorate degree. She’d envisionedContinue reading “My Body is a Sagging Tent”

High Butt Pressure

My poor sons were raised in an adult foster home so they have some rather peculiar perspectives on life. Yesterday I was taking residents’ blood pressures when one of my boys said, “Did you just say blood pressure? All these years I thought you’ve been saying ‘butt pressure’.” ____________________________________ One of my residents, Judy, wasContinue reading “High Butt Pressure”

The One You’re With

I’ve heard it said that if you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with. The two captivating desires of elderly residents I’ve cared for over the years have been to be in their own home and to have family visit everyday and care for them. They are almost obsessive desires.Continue reading “The One You’re With”

Meant to Belong to a Herd

  Part I: OXYTOCIN I took a magnificent Dementia class by fellow occupational therapist Teepa Snow. She taught a contact technique to use on people with dementia. She elaborated that it led to the release of Oxytocin, a hormone produced in mammalian brains. I call it our herd hormone. I later learned it controls socialContinue reading “Meant to Belong to a Herd”

Burying the Cat II

JD darted from the church and into his car in record time. Drenched in sweat, he felt like he would pass out. After he’d got a grip on himself, he reached into his front pocket of his stiff new Bi-Mart jeans for the infamous phone. He stilled his shaky hands and flipped the little gadgetContinue reading “Burying the Cat II”

Knock Your Ass to the Floor

I’m scraping my left overs into the kitchen-scrap bin for my chickens. I smile sadly as I think of Coach. I wish it was his left-overs I was scraping … As far as I can tell he has always commanded authority, even though he is the biggest kid on the planet. I would watch hisContinue reading “Knock Your Ass to the Floor”