Friday, August 22, 2014

A Funny Thing Happened at Eiffel Gardens

Two years ago this month, Eiffel Gardens, an assisted living facility, has become home to my mother. She enjoys the delicious meals, visits from family and friends, but mostly keeping a bit of  her independence. 

When Mom moved in the home, she insisted on getting a wheelchair. Physical therapist started coming three times per week to make sure she walked. When she found out she could fire them, she did, saying, "I don't need anyone to tell me when to walk or how far."

Today, she's become lazy about walking. She stays in that wheelchair except to use the bathroom. The walker sit in the corner, never getting used

OR so we thought....

Until a couple of weeks ago. While I rolled Mom to her room, (from outside on the patio where we'd been enjoying the cooler day), a worker stopped us then, bent down to speak in my mother's ear. "Mrs. Annie, did you have a visitor in your room, yesterday?" 

Mom replied, "That was my other daughter."

 "No, I'm talking about a MALE visitor."

When I pieced together the her and Mama 's story, I came up with this. I hope you get a good chuckle. 

Mama lay in bed taking her afternoon nap when the door opened. An (obviously disoriented) elderly man, a new resident at Eiffel Gardens, walked into her room holding a plastic thermos. "Can I get some water in this?" Mr. Green asked 

Mama rolled over and told him, "You're in the wrong room. The ice is in the kitchen." 

He ignored her, walked close to Mom's bed, then sat down in her wheelchair. Just SAT there holding his thermos. Well...Mama was having none of that! She threw the covers back, got out of bed then adjusted the foot rests on the wheelchair for him. After opening the door she pushed Mr. Green straight down the hall, back to his appointed room. All the while Mr. Green sucked on the straw protruding from his dry thermos, enjoying the free ride. 

While Mom helped him into his easy chair, a worker came in. Guessing what had happened, she said to my mother, "Sit down in the wheelchair, Miss Annie, and I'll roll you back."  Mom did and enjoyed the return trip to her room. LOL. 

I related the incident to my brothers and sisters. The incident we would have never known about if the assisted living employee hadn't spilled the beans. Everyone had a good laugh, but mostly, we kids were amazed that our mother could walk. She never lets on that she can do any more than get out of the wheelchair at the bathroom door.

A year prior to entering Eiffel Gardens, our mother, at age 91, still mowed her yard with a riding mower. Though one brother took over the mowing, she never stopped packing in firewood we children stacked on the porch.

Sad to say, Mr. Green's family was alerted. They came to get him. This was the third time he had been in my mother's room. It was sadder because he left  a wonderful lady (in the first stages of dementia), he had fallen in love with. It was endearing to see Mr. Green and Mrs. Odom  walking the halls, hand in hand. Rarely, was one seen without the other. I thought to myself,  "It's like the blind leading the blind." I wonder if these Love Birds miss each other, or...if they remember each other.