Monday, July 21, 2014

Dog Day at the Nursing Home

Isaac and I visited the nursing home this morning.

As we were walking from the car to the front door, as Isaac stopped to pee on a tree in front of the home, his friend Millie saw him from her window and began rapping on the window and waving excitedly at us.  I waved back and made sure her room was one of our first stops.  Isaac loves Millie and she loves him.  She chatters to me about her dog, which she says is a little dog but she can't remember what kind.  I'm not sure if the dog is still living and maybe staying with a relative now that she's in the nursing home or if this is a dog she used to have that has died at some time in the past.  I'm not sure Millie knows herself.  When she talks, she only kind of makes sense.  I can tell she is talking about her dog, or talking about Isaac, and I get the gist of what she's saying but it's hard to make out a lot of actual facts.  Which is OK.  I just listen and encourage her to talk, and the whole time she is petting Isaac and loving on him. 

At one point she firmly took Isaac's leash from my hand and held it to her chest, as if to indicate she would just keep him there with her.  She startled me a little, she took the leash so quickly and firmly.  I understood what she was trying to say, though, and said something like, "He could just stay here with you, couldn't he?"  After a minute, she handed the leash back to me.

Later, as we were getting ready to leave the nursing home, we passed the dining room and saw Millie seated at her regular table there, waiting for lunch to be served.  I went over to her and said, "Isaac wanted to say goodbye again," which delighted her.  Then she got up, took hold of Isaac's leash, and clearly wanted to go across the room to see someone else.  So I went with her, letting her hold Isaac's leash but holding it myself, too.  She was having trouble telling me what she wanted or who she wanted to see, but I could tell what she wanted.  Millie's husband is also a resident of the nursing home, but he eats lunch at a different table.  I don't know why.  They do share a room.  It turned out to be him that she wanted to take Isaac over to.  She wanted him to see Isaac.  I've never heard him talk but he smiled and patted Isaac on the head.  Millie was clearly happy to have shown Isaac to him.

We visited Isaac's friend Sue, who is always waiting for him when we arrive.  I think I'm going to pick up a bag of dog treats to leave with her to give him when we visit.  Every time we see her, she says something like, "I need to have my son pick up some dog treats for me" or "I meant to get my son to bring me some dog treats."  I don't think her son visits that often, though.  I always have some treats in my pocket and I give her one to give to him when she says that, but I think she'd like to have some to keep there for him.

We visited another women, who I'll call Edith.  We hadn't ever seen her before.  I'm not sure if she is a new resident or why we hadn't seen her before.  I couldn't get her to talk to me but she loved petting Isaac.  She looked very sad, kind of tearful, and was making a kind of babbling noise but didn't say any actual words.  She petted Isaac for a long time, though.  She clearly enjoyed petting him.  I want to make sure we see her again next time we visit.

There is a man that is always in the dining room when we visit.  I forget his name.  He loves Isaac and when he sees him coming into the dining room, he yells, "It's Isaac!  Hey everyone, Isaac is here!"  Today he had a package of Oreos and wanted to give Isaac one.  I let him.  I know, Oreos are not really good for dogs.  Chocolate is not good for dogs.  I figured one Oreo would not really hurt him, though.  And this guy really wanted to give him a cookie.  Isaac, of course, loved it.  After gobbling it up, he licked the crumbs off the floor.

As usual, the staff always enjoyed seeing Isaac.  There was a maintenance guy that stopped us and asked if he could pet Isaac and I said of course.  He then plopped down on the floor and had Isaac in his lap, licking his face and snuggling up to him.

No comments:

Post a Comment