Fred

Fred was a gentle soul. He had been a boxer and a farmer and lost a finger. When I met him at the nursing home, he was suffering from dementia but didn’t let that get him down. He always had a smile, a friendly greeting, and a handshake and managed to brighten my day every time I saw him. He is the subject of the following poem from How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver.

Fred

“How are you today?” I ask the old man in his wheelchair, as he smiles at me.

“Fit as a fiddle and ready for love,” he answers.

He asks me the same questions. “What’s your name? What’s my name? Why am I here? Where’s my wife? You’re a beautiful girl. Do you have a husband?”

I could stay with him all day, repeat the answers to his questions—but I have places to go, things to do, people to see. With reluctance, I say goodbye.

Fred loved music. Here’s one of the many songs I sang to him and other residents at the nursing home. This link will be available for at least a few days.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/15213189/always.mp3

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of
We Shall Overcome
and
How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver
http://www.abbiejohnsontaylor.com

Author: abbiejohnsontaylor

I'm the author of two novels,, two poetry collections, and a memoir. My work has appeared in various journals and anthologies. I'm visually impaired and live in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, I cared for my totally blind late husband who was paralyzed by two strokes. Please visit my website at http://www.abbiejohnsontaylor.com.

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