Taken on her 68th wedding anniversary. A quiet but sweet day.

Taken on her 68th wedding anniversary. A quiet but sweet day.

Today, Mom was moved into her new room as a permanent resident of Consulate Health Care for full-time custodial care.  She entered the hospital in mid-October and soon there after entered rehab. With the exception of a brief return home and another stint in the hospital, she has been in rehab until today.

In January, she developed pneumonia just for starters and took a tremendous toll on her body and her will.  She hasn’t walked or stood up since.  For the past two months, she has refused to participate in her recovery and makes not excuses.  She slowly started eating less and for the last few weeks has totally stopped eating.

This has been very hard on Dad, being the classic optimist, for he has cheered her on and been so positive every step of the way.  Until lately he has been in complete denial to not only the subtle signs but to the “in your face signs” such  as when the physical therapists telling Mom over and over what happens by not moving.  A few weeks ago it began to sink in that the love of his life of 70 years (68 of which are married) will not be returning home.  This appeared to be a conceivable thought for him but the bolt of reality struck him last weekend when she said she wanted to die.

Since then Dad has opened talked and sobbed bout this to my sister Nancy. The reality is sinking in.  My friend Gayle, who also comes in and cleans for Dad every two weeks, summed it up by observing that “Charlie is lost.”  For the first time in his adult life, he is alone to do so many things that he has done with a life-partner to help in the decisions and work.  This is taking its toll on him emotionally, mentally and physically.  Many family and friends are watching over and assisting.  Time will tell how he reacts and adjusts to all of these changes.

In the meantime, Dad spends most of his days sitting in Mom’s room.  Most of the time he is there, she spends sleeping.  I’m sure it gives him some peace of mind to at least be near her while he can.  A sad but beautiful scene.

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