The quieter you become the more you can hear ~ Ram Dass

Monday, February 13, 2012

Mrs. Dunkin #16

This is an ongoing story I've decided to write and put on my blog every Monday.   Please excuse the errors, I'm only doing limited editing.  Constructive criticism welcome.  I wish I had a cute button on the side where the story could go but I don't know how to make a button.  Even if I did I wouldn't know how to link up the story LOL.   So if you miss a chapter, you'll have to look at my sidebar for it.  The first chapter was written on October 23, 2011 so that should at least be some help, ha.


“Ladies, do you want to eat your supper in here?” 

“That would be fine but I’m not really hungry” Annie said as the aide left. 

“Annie, try to eat something.  They mark down how much you eat.” 

“They do; for what?”

“I don’t know they just do.  They always want to know something.”

“Here are your trays” and the aide shimmied Clara up to the table. 

“Let’s see what we have.  Mmmm, tuna salad on lettuce.  This is one of my favorites.” 

“I like it too.  Perhaps I can eat a little something.  I have a feeling I’m going to gain some weight being here” and we laughed. 

“So Clara, you didn’t like being a stay at home mom?” 

“It’s not that I didn’t like it.  When my kids got older, I would have liked to work even if it was only part time but Harold said no.”

“What did you do with your time then?”  

“I did a lot of volunteering at school and then when I had more time at the hospital.  I loved it.”

“Well then, you might not have worked for money but what you did was very important.  Without volunteers many things would never get done.  You should be proud of that.”

Clara brightened up and said, “Thanks, I never looked at it that way.”

We sat quietly eating when I suddenly felt something rubbing on my legs.    

“Clara, I think I might be delusional.” 

“Why” she asked. 

“I think I see a cat”.

She burst into laughter.  “You’re not crazy.  That’s Maggie.  Hasn’t she come to visit you yet?”


“She lives here.  My understanding of how she got here was she was a resident’s cat and when that person passed on; the nursing home people just let her stay.  She’s very good with the residents and knows just who to go by when they are having a bad day.  You must not have needed her yet.”

“She is a beautiful cat” as she reached down and petted her.  “Hi Maggie, it’s nice to meet you” and Maggie purred at Annie’s touch.  “I’ve still got a whole lot of stuff to learn about this place.  I’m happy I met you Clara.”

“Me too” Clara said.  “I think I’m going to go see how Helen is doing.”

“Night Clara, maybe I’ll see you in the morning.”

“Good night, Annie.”

I put my nightclothes on and grabbed my knitting and sat on the rocker.  I turned the TV on.  Not that I really wanted to watch anything, it was more for the noise. 

Maggie looked quite comfortable sleeping on my bed.  I knitted for a couple of hours and was thirsty.  I put on my bathrobe and decided to go down to the visitor’s room to see if I could get something to drink. 

The lights were already dimmed as I made my way down the hall. 

“Annie, can I help you” Sheila asked.

“I was looking for something to drink besides water.”

“Would you like some juice or milk?”

“Juice would be great.  What are you still doing here?”

“This is one of my long days.  I’ll be going home soon.  I’ll get you the juice from the fridge.”

I walked into the day-room and sat on the recliner.   There was really no activity happening except for the low sounds of TV’s in the residents rooms. 

“Here you are, Annie.  How are you getting along so far?”

“Okay, I suppose.  It sure is different from being at home.”

“Better or worse?”

“A little of both I suppose.  I think I might miss the freedom I had but I think I’m going to like having people around all the time and there seems like a lot of things to do here to keep myself busy.”

“That’s a great way to look at it.  If there is something you would like to do that we don’t have maybe you can join the ladies club here.  They have meetings once a month with the administration and discuss what’s happening.  The administrator feels that the residents are the best ones to meet with to see what’s going on that’s right and wrong here. He’s always looking for suggestions too. ”

“I think I would enjoy something like that.  Who would I see about that?”

“I’ll leave a note for the receptionist and she can pass it onto the club and they’ll contact you.”

“That would be great, dear.  I’m going to take the juice back to my room.  I’ll probably go to bed early.  It will be a big day tomorrow with my children coming.  Good night.”

“Have a good night’s sleep, Annie.”




Ames said...

You might be changing my mind about a nursing home. :) I had no idea they allowed pets and they had a liason group to meet with administration to bring issue to their attention. I hope that is true. I really do. I am enjoying your story Viki. See ya next Monday!~Ames

J. Kwiatkowski-Schuler said...

I hope nursing homes are like luxury hotels!