A lot going on. Good things and bad things. A mixed bag, as always I guess.
A few snippets:
One of my clients is, for the most part, non-verbal. He does not respond except to swear, mostly, and I've felt right along that he does not understand what he is saying. Still, when he is assigned to me, I take him for a walk whenever he asks. He 'helps me' with the trash, closing the cupboard doors as I put away the dishes. I talk to him constantly, thanking him, praising him. I have noticed that he can dress himself without my assistance, and I tell him how proud I am of him. One of his goals is to interact more in a group setting, and that is a hard one, because he sits in his chair in the corner, and mumbles to himself, staring off into space. But yesterday, a cool thing happened. He helped me, and I told him how wonderful he was and he stopped, looked at me, and he gave me a quick and fleeting smile. It tickled me so much that I hugged him, and he stood like a tree. "Aw!" I said. "Give me a hug," and surprisingly, he did. I almost cried. Later, he came up to me and began to babble that he wanted to go for a walk. Never mind the fact that we'd been for a walk four times already. I looked at him, and he reached out to touch my arm and stare at my face intently. By God! He got his walk. I'm excited by this, because I believe the first step to taking part in group activities is the awareness that there are people outside himself.
We were at an antique store. We seldom buy, truly, but it is always good to see what is there, because sometimes we do see things that we want. We were walking out of the mall where we'd gone to make a return, and I said to Tim, "Wanna stop in at The Attic?" and he said, "Sure." We blabbed to the owner as we usually do. She asked what we were looking for. I heard Tim say, "She has no idea what she's looking for." The woman disagreed, saying that she thought I knew exactly what I wanted. They were both half right. "In my defense," I called out from the back of the store, "I might not know exactly what I want, but when I see it, I know immediately that I want it. Take yesterday for example. I did not know that I wanted a cobalt blue bugling elk gravy boat until I saw it with my own eyes." And there you have it. The truth of the matter.
A sad snippet:
A beloved family member has been ill. His death has been predicted before, but he's always amazed us with his ability to bounce back. Still this last time, he's been pretty ill, and hospice has been called. We went to see him, and he's become skeletal, looking markedly different than he did in the Christmas photo right next to him. Tim took him a model of an antique engine, one that Tim recognized immediately. Uncle Herman has the same engine rebuilt and in his garage. It belonged to his father.
Uncle Herman's eyes grew distant as he thought of that engine out in his garage, how he'd rescued it from the dump, pulled it home, got it running again. He touched the wheels on the model, turning them slowly, lost in memories. When we left, I gave him a hug, and he hugged me strongly and said, "I love you," as he always does. He reached for Tim's hand and gave it a shake, and said, "Come back again, Timmy," calling my husband by his boyhood name. For some reason that made me tearful. It struck me that I may have received my last hug from him. By the time that we got to the car, I could not stop crying.
The one thing that I know is that an old adage has been disproved. I've often heard it said, "Only the good die young." That is some bullshit. Uncle Herman is 94, and he is one of the truly great people of this world. And I cry intermittently for the hour and a half home, hoping against hope, that he pulls another surprise comeback. Nothing would make me happier than that.
I no longer go to our church. Our preacher is a Teapartier who believes Obama is a sign of the end times, predicted in Revelations. I get sick of hearing his philosophies. I did not come to church to hear his politics. I come to church to talk about God, and it seemed that when he made these statements, he was looking square at me, challenging me. I walked out the door, and told Tim that I was not going back. I felt bad, and it was a hard decision, but now that it is done, I don't regret it.
Yesterday, at church, Tim said he began to slam the president and democrats in general, and it happened. One of the leaders of our church interrupted, saying, "This is not the place for that," and two other people spoke up to back his comment. The pastor was very surprised, and according to Tim, apologized on the spot, and changed the subject. He later began his sermon with another apology. I'm proud of the people who spoke up in church. The only thing that would have made me happier would be if my husband had spoken up to add his support. I don't go to church now, but Tim still does, every Sunday, which leaves the unspoken idea that I'm the one who objects, not him. But all the same, it was very reassuring to see that I'm not the only one that is troubled by this stuff.