LIONS, LAMBS, AND CONFUSION

Did March come in like a lion? I don’t know. I think I was confused that day. Confusion is the subject of this essay. Writers are advised to write what they know and I know confusion. Since I am bedridden, I spend a lot of time flat on my back. Within easy reach (meaning in bed with me) there are my home phone, my cell phone, two TV remotes, a calendar, note paper, pens and markers, my iPad, a few grooming tools, and a schedule of when each of my three caregivers is expected. Their schedules change frequently, and they cover for each other.

My caregivers and I are learning to text each other about changes in schedule. They are all much younger and more experienced at texting, but I am ninety-one and just learning. They can all move, see, hear, and think better than I can. I can do it, but not quickly. I am a fumbler with a tremor and fingers that don’t work well. I am also rather deaf, blind, slow, and disabled, so you must bear with me on this and everything else.

The computer throws me curves all the time that cause me to need help. Right now, for instance, I am starting this piece in a new Word document just like many times before, but how come this one has no margins? I don’t know how to fix margins! I pushed several buttons but the margins did not change, and now the font is not only tiny, but also red!

Earlier, I tried to forward an attachment to a friend. We had texted each other before, but I did not have her email address. I texted her to tell her that, and she promptly texted the address to me. After memorizing it, I went to a different site to enter it, but the phone rang. It was Express Scripts telling me there was a problem with my prescription shipping address, so I picked up the phone to talk to them but the recorded message ignored me. I played it again and again trying to hear and write down the call back number. Because I was flat on my back, the pen wouldn’t write because I was using it upside down and gravity sends ink away from the point. I finally got it done after playing the message several times.

Now I have the phone, iPad, and TV remote on top of me and can’t remember which one I was using. I know there are unfinishged issues waiting on all devices, but can’t remember what any of them are. Oh, yes, I was memorizing an e-mail address, but don’t remember whose or why. To settle down and relax for a minute, I start a Solitaire game but the iPad has decided to switch to a new version of Solitaire. I want the old familiar one, but don’t know how to get there. A new version of Solitaire is not going to relax me. So, maybe some CNN news would help, if I can only find the remote which I had in my hand a minute ago.

My day continues like this, never getting anything done successfully. At the end of a frustrating day, I tell a caretaker I believe I am losing my marbles. She insists that I am not, and tells me more about an Alzheimer’s client she cares for who puts her soiled disposable diapers in the washing machine. Compared to that person, my caregiver thinks my mind is sharp. Her comment is meant to reassure me, but doesn’t.

My son is using tough love on me forcing me to solve computer issues without his help. He is right of course, as he always is, and even that is annoying! I am learning to survive computer glitches on my own, no matter that it takes me two days to do what others could do in thirty seconds.

Does March go out like a lamb or a lion? Ask somebody who is not confused. I have too many other things to keep straight. Growing old is a full time job.

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