Monday, March 07, 2005

We got back from Florida last Tuesday. The flight was an hour and a half late, but not too bad considering there was much snow falling on Boston.

The trip was amazing, and complicated. We got up early with Eric (who miraculously slept until 7 more than half the days we were there.) But it was warm and we took him out almost all day every day. It did rain, but there's all kinds of museums and things to take him to. I'm looking forward to spring.

The trip was hard because it was sad to see my grandparents. They've gone down hill quite a bit in the last year. My grandfather stopped going to "day care" at a local senior center. They started following him with a strap around his chest to keep him from falling down. He's not so senile that he didn't notice, and it drove him nuts. They have in-home helpers now, but they are through an agency that only pays $7 an hour, so it's really hard to get good people that stick with it.

My grandfather fell out of bed one afternoon. We were sitting in the living room and we heard a roar. So, I went and checked on him, and he was lying on the floor looking bewildered. Rich and I helped him back into bed, and my grandmother (not surprisingly) slept through the whole incident. I really shudder to think what would have happened if we hadn't have been there. She shrugged it off. She's really angry about things he said to her in the 1960's, and she "can't forgive him." It's so strange she goes from screaming at him "SOL! Go back to bed!" to talking to him unbelievably gently when she offers him food or tries to help him with something.

It was a great trip. I'm glad we went. I wonder how much more time we get with them. My sister is almost 40. Not many 40-year-olds have 3 living grandparents. I think we're pretty lucky in general. They are in relatively good health, but it's still hard to watch them grapple with losing their independence.


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