Visited with Sam for an hour yesterday. His black eye is healing although there’s a visible rim of bruising along the bottom edge, following his cheekbone. He was in good spirits even though he’d just woken up from his afternoon nap. We couldn’t decide if his speech was a bit slurry because he’d just woken up or because he’d had a beer (!) with lunch. (He didn’t want his sister to know that he still had access to alcohol, even though he doesn’t drink that much – anymore! – and even tried to change the subject on me when I asked him about including it in the blog. 🙂 He finally decided Edith would probably tolerate his indiscretion – not like its “news” or anything!)
Speaking of which, Edith,
Speaking of which, Edith, Sam couldn’t place the tag, “hatch”. We brainstormed – was it a nickname? A game? A gift? Nothing rang a bell. You’ll have to explain! He’s looking forward to the pictures with Clara. Sorry about Chelinna’s illness (but glad she’s better) and the termites! Yikes! He sends his thanks, too, for the rest of your news.
Nona, that joke you sent about the Catholic Horses? Somehow, when I printed it the punch line got cut off, so I’ll have to take it next time. At any rate, keep those jokes coming! The rest of you too – Sam really loves them. 🙂
Dick, you and Emily are in Sam’s thoughts. He knows that it must be very stressful for you both and hopes everything goes well with the surgery. Please keep us posted, ok?
Our overall conversation today floated around quite a bit. Sam’s first comment when I arrived was about how great it was that [the BM] had visited him. 🙂 Then he asked about [the FP], with a bit of an implication about how the two of us are doing. (My next stop was therapy with her, so I was watching the clock in order not to be late. As I departed, I said, “wish me luck” and he said “you sound like you’re going to your deathbed.” It wasn’t THAT bad, although I wouldn’t exactly call it fun. It went ok.)
Sam had a Bostonia magazine that had a front page story on homeschooling, so we talked about that for a bit, whether or not we ‘agreed’ with the notion or not, what (minimal) experience/exposure each of us had with it. He wanted me to notice the quilt that was made for him by ICT students from SIT sometime ago – it’s a big one. (The ICT program is now the PIM program – Program in Intercultural Management.) And a sketch that a woman who “was married to a Cuban” made of him in “less than half-an-hour.”
We debated the likeness. Sam says he thinks it does look like him. For me, it was a bit of a stretch because of the eyes….he looks somber, not happy, and I think he really is happy most of the time. One of the nurses had told him that it “doesn’t allow for personality,” and I decided it represents his thoughtful side. When I said this, he said, “Oh.” I said “what do you think you don’t have one?!!” He grinned, you know he LOVES teasing. 🙂 Somehow this got us back on the subject of his speaking.
Barbara Dunn and the activities director, Karen, had both commented on Sam’s speech being clearer recently. I think it has a lot to do with his energy level. I mentioned how proud I was that [the BM] had listened carefully enough to understand him, and that I think the strategy of repeating what I think he’s said for clarity is still a good one. He said that people (unspecified) often “assume a lot” about what he is trying to say. There was a something in the way he said it that made me ask, “too much?” And he nodded. Which reinforces for me, again, that is important to verify understanding.
The other bit of news that Sam had was that two women who both lived in Eden Park had died recently. He had a bouquet of flowers from Ruth Fellows’ funeral. Sam used to take her Meals on Wheels when she lived at Putney Meadows. She was 99. The other woman, Peg Sisko (sp?) was over 100.
School starts for me next week, but I’m going to try my best to keep seeing Sam regularly. My goal is once a week, but it might turn out to be more like once every two weeks. Please keep your comments and jokes coming; he really really looks forward to them.
Best to all!