“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do.” — Bob Marley
My Papa Joe is 85 and has been faithfully married to my grandma for 60 years. His memory is slipping and he is really slowing down.
Today, he asked me to take him to Walmart because he wanted to get out of the house. I was thankful he asked because, as many of us know, he shouldn’t be driving. I thought it would also benefit grandma to have the house to herself for a while, not having to worry about grandpa for a few hours.
I watched him, cane in hand, taking the tiniest steps all around Walmart… I had no idea what he was after. I just thought he wanted out of the house. But as I observed each item he put in the cart, I noticed a theme. They were some of my grandma’s favorite things.
He got a bottle of her favorite soda. He carefully picked out a bag of her favorite grapes. He even bought her a small lemon pie… and then, my eyes welled with tears as I watched him hobble over to the fresh flowers and pick her the bouquet that had the most purple in it.
On our way home, he insisted we stop and grab a sandwich to take home for grandma’s lunch! May we all take a lesson from Papa Joe. Never stop being intentional!!!
This story was originally posted on Facebook and shared here with permission from the author. It connected with so many people on different levels. Below are some of the noteworthy reactions:
“So heartwarming. I’m a home health/hospice nurse and have always, through my years of nursing, never try to forget that no matter the individual’s mental status there is the real ‘self’ under it all. They just may not be able to express it. I try to talk to them in that time of their lives. You’re awesome.” — Jaime Kay Kunath
“As I spend 3 nights a week taking care of my parents both are in their nineties. Mom has MS with some dementia. Married 64 yrs they still kiss each other good night. Blessings to your family.” — Kim Whitney Wroten
“I work in senior living and I know and have seen that the one thing and agree only thing that dementia or Alzheimer’s cannot erase is love.” — Michael Mayes