Daddy, I cried because you were alert and present; you recognized me! Thank God that you did! I cried as I studied your charming face, watching the familiar spark dancing in your eyes. I cried in hearing the mirth in your voice close to my ears again. I cried as you embraced me in your arms, lovingly, tightly, just like when I was a little girl.
As I gaze upon you, I notice the years travel like a roadmap across your sweet face, and I observe the twinkle in your eyes growing dim as discomfort and pain take over. Your voice of mirth soon sounded a bit weaker, and I feel your grip grow feeble and noticed your hands soft, no longer solid, and callous from work. Sadness pierces my heart. Yet, time stood still. I am blessed, just by being in your arms again.
Daddy, I love you. So many years have passed. Oh, how I have missed you! I shall hold onto the memories and bring them back home with me, and shall cherish them forever!
This simple video here will mean a lifetime of precious memories …
You see, Daddy is in the beginning stages of forgetfulness (I don’t like the word dementia). While his short-term memory may be failing, he still can recall things that took place several years ago. Those memories are forever embedded within the recesses of his memory bank. Daddy has always been a storyteller, just visit here https://maryaperez.com/2013/06/07/i-no-spic-inglish/
On my last visit, it dawned on me that I should record him recanting one of his many stories regarding his first job, and also touch on the quirkiness of that particular story. His mind was fully intact, and if he ventured off, I easily steered him back on track. After we were done, I replayed the recording back to him. As he watched it, he became animated with emotions as if the entire event became alive and he was actually reliving the story. He pointed with eyebrows raised, agreed with what was being said, laughed, and even had tears in his eyes! He looked up at me and said, “When your daddy is gone, you’ll always have this to remember, eh?”
Back home in Texas, every time I play this video, it brings back tears to my eyes. I realize the possibility that in the days to come Daddy may struggle with his memory more and more. I think often about my mama and other elderly members of the family. I wonder if we would record them interacting and then play back those recordings to them, that maybe it can help our loved ones remember. Just like hearing a song we haven’t heard in a while and the way it will bring us back to a certain place in time. One thing that does not work, is to belittle them because they forgot or behaved in a way than they normally would. I watched how when one of us tried to correct Daddy when he said something he shouldn’t have said, how it would escalate into such a ruckus. I noticed if the behavior was ignored or directed into something else positive, the drama pretty much ended. Sort of like in dealing with children …
His eyes still twinkle with glee, and the mirth in his thick Puerto Rican accent, combined with his animated personality is my daddy – I will love and cherish him forever!
Any ads you might see from time to time beneath my posts are not approved by me. They are the price we pay for free use of Wordpress. However, if you are logged in to Wordpress, you will not see them. I apologize should any of the advertisements contain anything offensive or inappropriate.