Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Bliss in the Gulf

Monday, April 21. 2015,

A year ago today a little blue cottage on a beautiful island known as Sanibel became mine.

We had visited Sanibel dating, married with a child,  two, three. Every year we'd jump in the car and drive to Sanibel for two weeks. I know this island well. I like this island very much. We have met so many wonderful people here. Relationships born of sea shells and gulf waters, sunsets and pizza. And, of course, The Ding.

Fast forward:
Chuck retires. Ad company closes. Chuck can no longer spend winters up North. I start shopping for a house on Sanibel. Yes, bugs, yes, alligators, yes, hot. Yes, wonderful!! A technicolor paradise.
A natural high. Did I mention we have a private beach?

A new finding regarding connecting with your bliss
while having severe dementia has had me marveling at life.
 I mention this because it was always the music that we turned
to when Chuck needed a lift or we needed to connect. It was perfect as he still
walked and walked and walked, getting regular exercise.

Now, however, with the last stage breathing down our necks, we have found the gulf. This
is where Chuck is able to connect.
It is where he raised his arms to the sky and speaks to those who are listening. He is at home floating and swimming in the gulf, pointing at the birds and, always, showing the reverence and respect he has for this natural word.

Away from the beach his eyes are downward cast, his walk sometimes now shuffled.  Unsure, hesitant, he looks for a clue. Then we walk out onto our beautiful beach and he is reborn. His hat and shirt are removed and he again becomes one with his own amazing experience of life.

We are here for now, floating in the gulf, laughing.