Monday, June 2, 2008

Nursing Home Diary

My father, of course, is closer to his caretakers than he is to me. They are the ones who are with him every day. They are the ones who feed him, bathe him, change him, the ones who hold him close to their bosoms as they transfer him from bed to wheelchair, from wheelchair to bed. I am the one who visits twice a week and asks him to remember what he can't remember, that he had a wife, that he has children and grandchildren.

I sop up his drool and try to understand his gurgles, and I continue to visit him because I love him and it is the right thing to do, whether he knows me or not. And I also visit him from guilt, because I was the one who signed off on his life-saving surgery five years ago.

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