Here are a few snippets of the conversations that I have had with the residents of the local nursing homes this week.
Patricia, did I ever tell you about my little girl Rosemary? Well, she is a big girl now – age 64. She was a flower girl in her aunt’s wedding and her job was to drop the flower petals as she walked up the aisle. She did and it was just the cutest thing. But, you know what she did next? She bent down and picked them all up and put them in her little basket. Isn’t that a stitch?
Patricia, I have always been a fighter for women’s’ rights and I am still working on it. And peace, too. That is what this world needs.
The happiest time of my life? When I met Irv at the senior center. I really met him way back in 1994 but we were both still married. Our spouses passed away. We got together and have been married for 6 years. My other marriage lasted 50 years and this one is better than that one. He had to move into this place for health reasons and I decided to move in too. He doesn’t say much anymore but I love to sit next to him in his wheelchair and we just hold hands and enjoy each other’s company.
Patricia, I baked this cranberry bread for you. Don’t let anyone else see it. You are always bringing stuff in for us.
I used to be Grace Kelly’s friend. You know that beautiful actress that married Prince Ranier of Monaco. I was over her house all of the time. Right there on Henry Avenue.
We’ve lost two people this week. And 35 people have died since I got here. Remember Thelma and Esther? They’re gone now…passed way. God rest their souls.
The good times in my life? I have had so many. The nicest thing that anyone ever did for me, is that what you asked? Hmmm…..I have to think about that.
Patricia, you asked the best thing that I liked about my place of worship? Definitely, the people there. And the pastors. And the hymns. Just about everything is what I liked. And I loved when the missionaries came to our church and told about their work in the African countries –they called it working for God out in the bush, way out in the primitive villages.
I don’t know about this gangrene on my leg. See this black. It looks like tar paper is wrapped around my leg, clear up to my knee. No, that’s not medicine on my leg. Is that what you asked me? No, that is my skin. It turned pitch black from my diabetes. So far, the other leg ain’t got no black gangrene. But that leg has the rods in it from when I got run over by the bus on Broad Street. Two years and ten months ago.
Did ever have a collection of anything? Yes, rocks and minerals. I met my husband and he was a fisherman. I didn’t want to bait anything and sit there so while he waited for the fish to bite, I started collecting rocks, shells and stones along the beach or shores. I had quite an interesting collection for many years.
Patricia, Cora Lee is not doing very well. She is probably asleep in her room. They are just trying to keep her comfortable now. She is 92-years-old. She is one of the four Mothers in our church. They mentor the younger women in the church. She loves Roger the stuffed animal that you brought her two years ago. She tucked Roger in under the afghan that you gave her. She kept it with her on her wheelchair all day long. One time, somebody stole Roger. She was so upset. I told her she has to stand up for herself and raise Cain to get him back. I told her she could not be a pushover. She’s only a little bitty lady but she raised the roof and somehow the staff found Roger and got it back. See him, right there on her nightstand….right next to her.
I love the music that you play. It reminds me of high school when I used to dance with the girls.
I wish we could have Danish around here. It is just a little thing but it would mean a lot to me.
My husband was in here. Then, when he died, my children thought I should come to live here. I didn’t want to leave my home. The social worker told me sometimes you have to listen to your children…for your own good. Seems like it used to be the other way around.
Patricia, you gave me a cat stuffed animal. I loved the tails, the ears and the way it smiled at me. Somebody stole it. Can you get me another one?
The best time of my life was when I could walk. I have seven children and I am so much younger than everyone in here. I had a stroke so I cannot walk and I try to talk but most people have a hard time understanding me.
Patricia, his name is Paul. He can’t talk because he had a stroke. He just cries.