Remembering the real Father's Day I celebrated from this past year.
OK, parent obligations are over, at least temporarily. My Mom assures me that I don't have to babysit my Alzheimer stricken Dad today.
However, we had a minor moment of clarity yesterday.
My mother is from Guatemala so some things are difficult for her to understand, then add phone interference: The following conversation takes place. Yesterday, she went to the store for a few items and asked if there was any thing she could pick up for us. It turns out she could not grasp what my wife wrote on the shopping list, so she calls me and asks me to decipher. I told her it was 'dishwashing gloves'. She responds with, 'dishwashing glass', I say, no, 'dishwashing gloves', then she says 'dishwashing glue'. No Mom, there are no such products as, 'dishwashing glass' or 'dishwashing glue'! The wife needs 'dishwashing gloves'.
From here the repetition starts, "Dishwashing glass?" No, 'dishwashing gloves'. "Dishwashing glue?" So, as I continually reiterate 'dishwashing gloves'. My frustration increases, my voice rises exponentially, and for what seemed like an eternity, I have to repeat 'dishwashing gloves', over and over!
I look over at my Dad, he is laughing so hard he has tears coming out of his eyes. I'm sure it was an Abbott and Costello moment for him!
After several minutes of banging my head against the wall and stammering my feet, I lower my voice and in one last grasp struggle to help my Mom understand, I whisper, with all the effort I have left, 'dishwashing gloves'. Then I slowly spell it, 'g-l-o-v-e-s'. Very slowly and softly, I repeat 'gloves'!
By this time I was almost crying with defeat, while my Dad is crying with laughter!
Then there was a moment of silence, my Mother responds, "Ohhhh....dishwashing gloves!" Yes, I whisper, feeling like I had just been rode hard and put up wet.
Finally I hung up. My Dad and I continued to laugh about it for another five minutes. For about fifteen minutes there after, and the first time in a couple of years, my father and I were able to communicate clearly. What a great conversation we had! I had forgotten that my Dad had Alzheimer's!
It slowly dissipated and he asked with his now usual, confused look, "Where's Mom?"
Yes, we all know the cliché, 'Laughter is the Best Medicine'! If this is the case, can't some scientist's please look into what stimulates that portion of the brain. Some families are anxiously awaiting a cure.
Thanks to hilariously, strange and frustrating circumstances, I had my Dad back for 15 minutes, for that I will be eternally grateful!
Happy Father's Day Everyone