Words to Live by

Dear Nancy,

I think “Juniper” is really onto something and I love thinking of your Dad painting. I can’t wait to see what he creates. What I love most about programs like the is that they reaffirm the very real fact that AD patients are still viable. They still have brains & they still want & need to use them just like anyone else. I love that at “Juniper” they are maximizing and encouraging skills that still remain rather than focusing on what has been lost. As my Dad says, “if it’s gone, I really didn’t need it.” Perhaps I should get my Dad painting, too and see what he comes up with. (He, like your Dad, would most likely be reluctant to this idea at first, still preferring to do some kind of physical pursuit like “log splitting” or “fishing” but I doubt they have classes for these at “Juniper” or your Dad would be all over that!)

Dad & I were driving around the other day and out of the blue he said the following statements: “War is never the answer” and “I hate war.” My Dad was a Marine Corps fighter pilot who served in Vietnam. Never one to talk about his experience, these statements took me completely off guard and I asked if he’d like to talk about his feelings on “war.” He said, “not particularly” and looked out the window. Some more time went by and he said “I don’t like any kind of killing. Not when people kill animals. Not when they kill humans.”

I agreed with him totally. He went silent again, continuing to look out the window. “I do like guns though. AND bullets. Just not for killing.” I complimented him on his fine gun & ammo collection–a collection which dates back several generations. “I also have knives and swords. I can teach you how to use them. Make them sharp and someday they will be yours.”

Now, he cracks me up on a daily basis, always has, but suddenly he sounded like David Carradine in an episode of “Kung Fu.” I fully expected him to start calling me “Grasshopper.” I thanked him for his generosity, for I knew he was giving me something of great value to him. “You are welcome of course,” he said. “Every GOOD woman needs a sword!”

Words to live by….


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