Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Painted Lady by Diane Ogden


This isn't exactly what the ladies at the Nursing Home look like, but I have tried to find a way to lean in that direction with Berdie. Even though she cant wear red patent heels, or fur around her neck and red hats, all the while drinking wine, we are leaning that way. She has one of those new super soft blankets she loves. In fact we wrap it around her neck and at times her pillow. I bring her nutty long johns and cinnamon rolls and others bring her cookies for her "stach" in case lunch wasn't so hot or boredom sets in.. As for wine....well, decaf is the drink of the day... But we hit pay dirt with the nails! Yesterday I checked them and couldn't believe what I saw after I removed the polish from three weeks ago. Sick! Green dirt under every nail.... And she eats with those every day. Surprised she hasn't died from her own nail jam. Eeeewww. I soaked them in soap foam and that didn't work...then I went for the Purell Antibacterial gell. Ended up using a metal file to scrape the yellowish greenish brown crap from under each nail. I thought I would hurl for real. Of course I didn't let on. I suggested to Berdie she put the Purell under her nails before each meal. I mean come on folks....all they do is get her up and take her poddie, and put her back until meal time. Wipe her face and hands with a washcloth, give her a shower once a week and check her vitals. WhooHoo....Big days at the old Home. I try to see the positives... but I mostly don't because its a mere dull existence on a road to death with no U turns. At least her nails are clean and pretty in case today is the day but I suspect the earth suffering isn't over yet.
I tucked her in her wheelchair with her cushy blankie and we took a walk to the fish tank which in her new world is around the corner in the adjacent wing. We stop and watch the finches who Berdie says have lice that need attention..then to the fish tank while Andy passes us in his Cadillac motorized wheel car... There is one blue striped fish and several yellow ones. We watch them for a long time while I tell Berdie that now you can buy entire plasma walls of aquariums for your kitchen or bath or bedroom walls. A far "cry" from her one room world on Olbrich Wing. Then we stopped into the little chapel that seems so cold, but we rolled in had enough room to turn the chair around to go back out. Sort of like a back and back out bathroom.. Regardless....there was a bit of Holy Water left in the copper bowl...along with a long stray blessed hair, (must have been) of course I didn't tell. I reached into the Holy Water with two fingers then placed the water on Berdies forehead and blessed her in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and thanked God for his care of her in this time. She said Thank You. Berdie doesn't say Thank You very often but lately she tells me this allot. Then off we went with pretty nails back to her Penthouse Suite where she strives to stay awake so I wont leave. She made it to 9:15 p.m last night. I placed my hand on her and prayed the Lords Prayer. Her favorite. And added a prayer for sweet sleep and peace that passeth understanding.
Goodnite Berdie....
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