Do you know anyone who really listens when you have something to say? Who asks appropriate questions to help you pinpoint your exact meaning? Who makes you feel understood and comfortable and then by asking “Could it be another way?” destroys that comfort zone completely?I listened as the hospice worker told me my husband is “failing,” asked all the pertinent questions and she felt confident her conclusion was sound. However, I see he is argumentative, withholding, agitated, and angry with the staff and with the other residents, yet delighted visiting with me, talking and walking. Not going anywhere yet.
What a difficult time this is for me. I am drawn to spend more and more time at the memory care unit; I want to provide those moments of joy for my spouse as long as he is capable of experiencing them.He jumps up when he sees me, recognizes me at once in a disbelieving kind of way. "Is it you? Is it really you?" and to the staff "That's my wife," even if I arrive twice in the same day.
The staff has a hard time as Bob wants individual undivided attention doing what Bob wants to do, but he will color or build with blocks or play catch for a short while; he resents being told anything and he has no relationships with any other residents. He cannot listen to music or understand the televison shows; the movement on the screen doesn't attract his attention. He wants to discuss measurement, money, why men are bald and how he can "get out of here and move back to New York."
But most of his utterances are not understandable and do not make sense, he has lost all understanding of numbers, exaggerating the size and worth of what he sees and imagines. He spends his time looking out his window at a parking lot and a trailer park community with tall palm trees.