Day 6/7

Well, he got what he wanted…he died in his own bed at home on his terms. I knew it was close when I went to feed and clean him up yesterday. He wasn’t too responsive anymore and he wasn’t eating. His eyes were open and he moved around but his breathing was shallow.

I called the police & after they had their little show with their lights & sirens and cocky attitudes the mortuary came to take his body. He has no one for me to contact so I’m making his arrangements. I’ll keep his ashes until I decide what to do with them.

Now I have his house to sift through. He doesn’t have much by way of furniture but he’s got tons of books, art supplies, tools, electronics, old records and so many VHS tapes they’re uncountable. He liked to record the sit-com Cheers and listen to it. He’s got lots of his paintings and his beautiful drawings that really are priceless masterpieces. I may bring some down to the mortuary for his service. He was deeper than anyone ever knew, even me. It’s such a shame that he never saw how valuable his character was. He was a rare human being, I think he might even have been a genius but something inside him kept him from ever opening himself up to the people. I guess it’s true that you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink. God knows how I’ve tried.

Rest in Peace, Lone Ranger. You are in a better place now.

Day #5 – Sunday

He didn’t eat much of anything yesterday. I was very worried last night and stayed with him for several hours. He isn’t talking much and is having a hard time breathing. I just helped him drink his milk and made sure he was as comfortable as I could. At one point, I did mention that I noticed he was having trouble breathing and asked if I could call a nurse of doctor to come check on him and he belted out a “NO”. I got him his oxygen tank & offered to put it on him and he said no to that too.  I did a load of his laundry and told him some stories about what’s going on in my life. He’s never been too interested in hearing about my troubles but I thought maybe if I just talked as if no one was listening he’d hear in my voice how scared I am about the position I’ve put myself in to help him. I talked about his paintings I found when I cleaned out his house and told him how talented he is and wondered why they were hidden away. I told him how grateful I am for the people I have in my life that are helping me right now because I’ve dedicated all my time & energy to help him. I told him that I wished I would have slowed down more before he got this way so we could have talked more about our lives. He didn’t talk back. I don’t know if he even heard anything I was saying. It’s difficult to tell if he’s sleeping  or awake. I guess it  doesn’t really matter if he heard or not…I think just being there so that he’s not so alone is what he enjoys.

So this morning  my assistant was right on time. We went in and I brought him his breakfast. Today he only wanted his semi-frozen milk and a large glass  of ice water. My assistant gave him a sponge bath and changed the bedding. While he does that I just talk to my friend to keep him calm and comfortable. My assistant does not speak to my friend.

The first day home from the hospital he was able to walk from his bed to his bathroom with help  from me and a walker  and was able to make it back to his bed by himself. But now he can’t even sit up in his bed alone let alone use a toilet. We tried the bed-pan and urinal but that didn’t work either. So he’s in diapers.

Before my assistant  left he gave me some advice on caring  for the elderly and  tips on sanitizing everything. He told  me God will reward me  for what I do. He says he’s never known anyone to take such good care of a person that isn’t really anyone to them besides the hermit in the neighborhood. I don’t have a cruel bone in my body. I’d help my enemy if  he needed help. I don’t understand why all people aren’t as giving and caring and trustworthy. I know that’s exactly why I am hurting inside all the time. It’s hard for me to see that there is evil in so many people. I see only good.

Day #4

Well, Friday went better than I had  anticipated. I was finally able to find an assistant to help me with the Lone Ranger next door and I hired him on the spot. We got him turned right in his bed and all cleaned up again.

I’m really tired today. I am nodding off  while  I type  this.  I’ve already brought him his first meal which was just a quartered pear, 2 small bottles of orange juice and a pint of semi frozen milk. My assistant was here right on time and we got the tasks done fast. I still have laundry to do and later I’m having a friend come to install a light on his porch. The old light was broken and I just hadn’t gotten around to replacing it since I painted his house a few months ago. Now that I’m having to go in & out a lot at night, it’s just too dark and dangerous trying to walk up the steps into his house. I hope he doesn’t charge me anything for installing the light.