Sunday, August 14, 2011


Robert spent the day with us but it wasn’t until the drive back to New Home that we actually talked a lot. “A lot” being relative since Robert isn’t usually very talkative and the day didn’t allow for much talking time.

I picked him up after breakfast and he worked on his word search puzzle on the way back to my house (complaining about the shaky car – hey, it’s the road, not my driving).

Once we got home, he watched church on television which I had set to record before leaving the house to pick him up. (Okay, no judging! I realize it sounds odd that I make him watch church on television instead of splurging and taking him to an actual church but he likes it. Really!).

Robert then napped. (I’m not saying the two things are related. Just reporting the facts here.)

Next up, it was time for medicine and lunch. Oh, I hear you asking if I actually let him eat meat today. No, I did not. It was PB&J, chips and Rocky Road Ice Cream. (Wow. That sounds terrible in print. Does it help that it was whole wheat bread and organic jam?).

There was a bathroom break and then brushing his teeth (his dental hygiene habits are fabulous which is probably a good thing considering the lunch I just fed him).

Playing cards was next on the agenda. I won the first game (I know, look up and you just may see pigs flying around). He beat me the next game. (Phew – the world isn’t coming to an end!)

More meds. Thankfully, he reminds me! (I tend to forget the 2:00 p.m. dose.).

Time for the store. I want to make sure he has enough back stock of supplies to last while we’re gone for a few days. 7-Up, toothpaste, nighttime briefs and pens. (The last time I was out of town, his pen ran out of ink. What are the odds?).

Not a lot of time for in depth talking during the day but it was fun anyway. On the way back to New Home, he finished a word search puzzle and he didn’t feel like starting a new one.

So we talked. I explained I wouldn’t be coming over for a few days because we’re going to be out of town. I also told him Other Brother was taking his family to the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas. He said, “Sounds fun” to both my stories about our vacations.

Robert surprised me by reminding me he won $100 in Las Vegas many years ago when he went with our Dad. Did you win it at the slot machines?

“Playing cards.” How did I not guess that?

Even though Robert couldn’t play Blackjack now, it’s comforting (yet a little heartbreaking) to know he once was able to do so.

What was your best memory of Dad?

“He was nice. I liked him a lot.”

Hmm. If I had a gun to my head to come up with 25 words to describe our father, “nice” would come in at 137.

Memories are influenced by our perspective and since another of Robert’s memory of our Dad is that he encouraged him to read “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie (which is now Robert’s favorite book), then I suppose Dad seemed nice to Robert.

What about Mom? What do you remember most?

“I liked her very much. Too bad she died from so many injuries.”

Sometimes when Robert says things I can’t help but try to figure out how his brain sorts through information. Mom died of cancer; cancer destroys cells; maybe the brain files this under “injuries?”

Mom and Dad loved you very much, too, Robert.

“Yes. I loved them a lot too. Are we almost there?”

I’m not sure if Robert will remember this conversation a few years from now (or if he’ll remember to put on clean jeans tomorrow like I asked him to) but I’ll remember. Thanks for the memory, bro.


Joan Oliver Emmer said...

Lovely. I'm kind of speechless.

Trish Hughes Kreis said...

Thank you, Joan. This was a toughie. Stirred up my feelings of missing mom and dad. I'm so glad you came by.

Kathy Lowrey said...

Hey, nothing wrong with a nap after church. I took one every week. It is the day of rest you know. ;-)

I love Roberts memories of your parents. Simple yet heartfelt. And I love the fact that you got a chance to talk.

Happy Heart <3

Trish Hughes Kreis said...

Thank you, Kathy! Sunday is the day of rest -- I should have remembered that. :-) Hope you and Hubby are well!