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Thanks for the Memories

An old neighbour who I met in 1963, turned 86 this morning. We lived next door to each other for 20 years. He lost his wife aged 91 years, lost his driver’s license, last month and feels very isolated. A few days ago I sent an email, with photos and received no reply.

Sadly his memory is not good either.

I rang this morning for his birthday only for him to tell me that, no, he had not seen the photos and said something to the effect that he would have to do something to be able to see them. He then said that his nurse was there and he put me on to her. It transpired that he had no email any longer. I explained to her our long relationship and I told her that perhaps she might help him.

You know that with 15 minutes the nurse had connected him to a new email address, sent me a message, that I immediately returned it and my old friend was over the moon. He had outside communication.

I reflected on the way that ‘Crystal’, had used initiative, courtesy and compassion, to help an old pensioner. My friend had been a very competent mechanic.

We are only months apart in age and as an old friend, it was the least I could do. He was a bit overwhelmed to think that after 40 years, that people cared.

This struck home when I related the first time we met; he had forgotten his friends name, but I recalled his first name as Ron, but could not remember his surname. This morning when I rang him I had remembered and told him. Suddenly the lights went on and those memories came flooding back.

My own wife cannot recall something immediately told to her. She says to me time and time again, how do you know that? I am blessed, and it too ‘the memory’, is a great friend. Old age, has many turns, these are the moments we treasure …God willing.

I am her fulltime carer but I try to keep her memories alive.

Without memories, who are we?

" Grains of sand on a beach that no one ever walks on. Or a beach that many people have crossed yet the foot prints fade into the sand as though no one was ever there.

It takes people like him to hold a hand and remind those we love that we are here for them and have always been there for them.

But we have to hold out that hand and show them the way." 

He holds his wife’s hand every day.

Today we hold our friend's hands.

That is love." 

 

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