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A difficult year, a heart-breaking day

At times we have to deal with difficult situations in our life. Not all of it is smooth sailing.

It all started about a year ago, when my wife was forgetting where she had placed certain items. She no longer could remember where she had left her eyeglasses or her purse; could not remember if she had fed the dog or had called her girlfriend. Slowly it became worse. She no longer could deal with the dishwasher, the stove, the microwave, the telephone or the computer.

She, who had in the past had obtained university degrees, was lost when it came to numbers. She needed help because she no longer realized that one white sock did not match with a black one on the other foot. Often she would put her top on backwards, and was not capable of putting on her shoes.

Her husband dealt with dressing her in the morning and getting her ready for bed in the evening. It all became worse as time went by and she began to hallucinate, seeing things that were not there and not seeing things that were. According to her, we had other people living at our home and a little black kitty in our bedroom. She placed some water dishes in the bedroom and was sure that the kitty had been drinking the water, not knowing that our small dog would drink the water during the day.

Her husband had a continued struggle dealing with her. It was hard on him physically but especially mentally.

Finally, he took the heart-breaking step of placing her in a memory care facility. One morning, he loaded in his van much of her belongings, and with her next to him in the car, drove to the facility. Earlier she had selected a room there, and they had purchased a bed, and that day they placed her possessions in her room. He helped her place her items in the closet and eventually had to leave her and go home to the little dog they left behind. She had said goodbye to the dog, a heart-wrenching event. The poor dog did not understand what all this was about, but the wife let her tears go freely.

When her husband was ready to depart, her tears came again. It was a most difficult move on both parts. She continued to cry, and he too was in tears. When he finally walked away, her hand came slowly up as a last and faint farewell.

He can visit her in the courtyard of the place but not even in her room because of COVID-19.

What a way to exist after years of marriage. And there he sat with a dog that did not understand why his mistress was not coming home.

Floyd J. Antonides lives in Central Point.

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