My Dad Can Still Laugh at Sad Things 


There are a lot of new residents at the memory care center and they’re amazing. One of them is this whipper snapper, Mr. L. Unlike most the residents who are somewhat sedentary or zombie ish at times) him and Ms. M (who they call the trouble maker) have tons of energy and wander around like they’ve got ants in their pants. The staff give them dust busters to keep them busy cuz otherwise they are constantly getting into trouble, especially wandering into other people’s rooms. Mr. L has gotten into the habit of taking things from his own room and putting them in other people’s rooms. (We’re not sure if he thinks this is his room or what the reason is behind this). Tonight We found these pictures of his daughter’s wedding in my dad’s room.
I’ve only been here a half a day and it’s the most entertained I’ve been in forever. These folks are just so precious and the staff adore them so so much and this place is the best thing that could have happened to my father and our family. He may not be able to comprehend much anymore, but he’s still able to laugh at how ridiculous the stuff that’s going on around him is sometimes and that proves to me how just much this place has saved him from losing his sense of humor, which to me, would be the death of him. Derek (his caretaker) said to him tonight, “Hey Mr.Bob, you glad Melanie is back? She sure is quite the comedian isn’t she?” My dad looked at him with his classic smarmy expression “You know She got that from me.” And he’s right. I am so much like my dad in a lot of ways and I never thought I’d be so happy to say that about a man I criticized and judged for so many years. This part of him that he gave me will always be the thing I love most about myself. That will always remind me of him once he’s gone. And if it weren’t for this sense of humor that we share, we wouldn’t be able to laugh at something as fucked up as Alzheimer’s.

(Nashville, TN)

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