jane bought me a new john deere tractor.

today dad had an appointment with the memory clicic at vanderbilt to address the recent concerns with his parkinson's disease.  i met mom and dad early, so i could go with them and my brother.  {that was the plan at least, then my brother bailed.  he had to work or something.  loser.  and it is his birthday too.  you are really not a loser, bubba --- if you are reading this, i think you are rather grand...i even wrote a blog about you once called bubba.  the proof is in the pudding.}

long story short (when has THAT ever happened?), after a very thorough exam starting with simple questions like "can you spell 'world' backwards, mr. morrison?" (i didn't make eye contact, because i was sitting there thinking D...L...uh....) "mr. morrison, what is 100 minus 7?"  then "what is 93 minus 7?"  again, i looked at the floor, because i know the answer but it might take me a second.  they asked him to write a sentence, any sentence.

"jane bought me a new john deere tractor."  
was his sentence.  that's when i wanted to throw my hands back and start singing, "thank god, i'm a country boy." i resisted simply for fear they might ask me what 93 minus 7 was and then ask me to spell 'world' backwards.  but i love that sentence.  it is my favorite sentence ever.  

then we saw the doctor; well the senior resident.  his name was dr. charles clarke.  he is from west virginia.  he is a country boy. he got his undergrad at west virginia, then went to ohio state.  he does not like the vols.  he married his high school sweetheart. he does like tennessee, he likes the weather.  his dad has a john deere tractor that cost $20,000 to mow the grass.  when his dad bought it he said, "are you crazy?"  he knows what bush hogging is, because he is from the country.  with the exception of his social security number and his wife's name - mom covered all her basis.  she got his history.  

and he thought this meeting was about dad. bet he was tired after an hour with us. i was tired after an hour with us.  

then, dr. brian thompson came in and met with us along with dr clarke.  two doctors for the price of one, i call that a good deal. he used me as the bunt of his jokes several times, and i politely laughed because i am polite.  and i didn't want to kick him in the shins because i might get in trouble and it would have interfered with mom getting all his information.  

dr. thompson did not marry a tennessee girl, he married a red headed girl from alabama where he was six years previous to his move to tennessee in 1992.  she still loves him and is with him.  you go, red headed gal from alabama.  then he used several very large doctor words speaking to his co-hort and mom let it go at that.  at least we know he is married to a red head.  mom did get the opportunity to tell him that when she met dad her hair was blonde and that she likes my hair better blonde.  he laughed and said "and look what he's [dad] done to you."  she has a full head of lovely grey hair now.  

when it was all said and done and after we [mom] got their histories, they came to the conclusion that with the last two 'spells' that dad has had where he has fallen and then a rapid memory decline are bouts of delusion - triggered by something being off in his body - B12, infections, urinary tract infection, pretty much anything.  because he has parkinson's and is older he can not recover from a setback like a fall or being sick like a healthy person without parkinson's disease can.  it takes him longer to recover.  he said there is a small amount of dementia going on, but no signs show that he is in the beginning sages of alzheimer's. so, over all - it was a good report.  he will go back in a month or so for a full day of memory work and they will test him on all sorts of different activities - to see what part of his brain is being mostly affected and then they can measure the decline or steadiness of dad's brain.  

does your brain hurt now?  mine does.  

1.  after that we looked like the three blind mice trying to get out of the maze of vanderbilt.  i was the leader, that might have been the first problem.  

2.  mom said, "roy, put your cane down."  [dad uses  -carries-  a cane now when he walks, except he carries it and doesn't use it.  helpful.]

3.  dad noticed the back tire was low on their van, and said, "jane, i don't think we can make it home on that."

4.  "roy, USE your cane."

5.  i said, "well, we have to get out of the parking garage, so we can't just stand here and look at it."  now that's some intelligence.

6.  we went and put air in the tire.  dad got out cane and all and supervised his youngest [me] putting air in the tire.  mom supervised dad and myself.  i had a short white skirt on and was squatting, i think i might have gotten hit by the cane a time or two while i was down there.  

7.  "dad, put your cane down!"

8.  the air conditioner is broken in mom's van.  and only one window rolls down.  it was 95 degrees outside and 195 degrees inside the van.  i was in the back with no ventilation.  good thing we were so close to vanderbilt.  for i liked to have died.

9.  the doctors referred to parkinson's disease as 'parkie' like it was their buddy.  kinda guess it is, after all, they are neurologist.  "yeah, that is parkie for ya."  and then they snicker.  

10.  my mom wanted my purse.  she tried to take it.  i tried to give it to her.

11.  i tried to explain twitter to mom.  it ended with me saying, 'nevermind.'  and her thinking, 'kids, these days.'

and that's the latest.  and seriously, thanks everyone for keeping dad in your thoughts and prayers.  it is much appreciated.  after all, parkie's no joke. 


Alicia said...

seriously, can you adopt me into your family? i can totally see that whole day taking place and i must admit...I LOVE IT!!!!!

Kay said...

Jessica, this was hilarious. I could just see your mom getting all the info from the Drs. and the parking lot scene was hilarious. Keep posting! I love it.

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