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I drove about 70 miles today.
Yesterday, I drove 30 miles.
My life has become a series of car rides. Rides to do errands. Rides to entertain Emma and Bo. Rides to fill in the empty spaces. Rides to nowhere in particular.
Bo’s Alzheimer’s has sort of reversed its course. No, not for the better, but his nights and days have become more normal, and that means that he is awake from morning until night, and he has nothing to do. If I get up at 7:30, so does he. If I get up at 8:30, he does too. And then he wants to know what we’re going to do today.
When I say that I need to go someplace, to do something, he asks, “Can I come with you?”
I know that he is so bored, feeling useless and helpless. He’s mixed up, isn’t sure where he is or how he got here. Almost every day he asks me what he should be doing. Today, he was standing by the sliding doors, staring at the backyard. Then he came to me and said, “What do I need to do? You’ll have to tell me.
I explained that there was nothing to do yet. When it’s warmer, we will do things together – clear the vines from the fence, spread the Hollytone around the azaleas, whatever I can think of to keep him busy. But he tires so quickly, our yard work will be in very small spurts.
“Well, you have to tell me everything,” he repeated. He was so sad.
So, in the meantime, we drive around and around … and around for hours. We drive up and down the streets of nearby (and some not so nearby) towns, take new country roads, visit places I haven’t been to in years. I make a turn every time Bo comments that he’s “never been there before.”
We go to every park I can find and walk Emma, who by the way is a VERY HAPPY dog because she loves the car! Every ride is a new route to Bo. He enjoys the classical music in the car, humming or whistling along with it as we joggle along, and he comments many times each trip, “Those sure are small houses.” Interestingly, he never complains of the buzzing in his ears that makes him so miserable at home.