Day Quote. Clinical Version.

September 23, 2009 at 6:28 pm (Day Quote) (, , , , , , , )

This is actually from some of my school work. It’s from an article I had to read about Dementia and behaviors associated with. Our focus is on the older patient right now and how to best care for them and the many changes that occur with advancing age. I thought this was smart and sentimental and inspires me to be kind, always.

My Stepfather in the Nursing Home

For lunch he wears a clean white shirt,

strapped into his wheelchair with his hair

smoothed back, the shoulders

of his good Brooks Brothers jacket

straight. He takes a tiny sip of water,

puts down his glass, forgets and picks it up,

twelve times. Strangers he once knew

pass through the lobby of his mind,

ask him questions he can’t answer,

change his sheets and towels.

He throws his tray across the room

and howls the hotel’s lost his luggage

just when he’s close to a big deal.

He can’t find a pencil, does the math

in his head, and everyone’s stealing

his money. He tries to tell the nurse

he’ll get her a job in sporting goods

(the company he built from scratch,

nights, weekends), but the sentences

slur like acrobats who’ve lost their timing.

I remember he’d choke up reading

every heartbreak story in the Denver Post.

Afterwards he’d send a check.

—Wendy Drexler, senior editor at Educators Publishing Service, Cambridge, MA

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