Thursday, September 02, 2004

Home Sweet Nursing Home



I know you have all been eagerly awaiting my next essay on the life of the fashionably dressed librarian. For the past week, I've been dealing with lots of things. Death, Nursing Homes and illness. Ironically, each within its own confines..none related to the next.

First, the management class that I enrolled in was cancelled. Due to the untimely illness and unexpected death of a dear professor.

Then, I went to visit my partners Grandmother deep in the hills of Pennsylvania. After our first day there, I became very very sick. This ultimately ruined a perfectly good visit to see Grandma H.

The nursing home, as pictured above, is deep in the country side. A winding, tree lined, single lane street leads to this rest home. The first thing that struck me was its hospital like quality. Perhaps I've watched too many brit-flicks, but I was expecting a rolling mansion filled with old camel back sofas, lamps with beaded trim, and nurses who wore shawls and white caps. This is not the case at all, gentle readers. The nurses were apple cheeked and wore colorful pullover cotton shirts and white pants. The floors are all tiled, and the rooms were almost institutional.

To cheer Grandma H up, we brought boxes of her costume jewelry. Strings of beads, paste rings, and clip on ear rings. Such a simple gesture brought her so much happiness, and a happiness that was contageous. She is much more mobile and aware than many of the other residents in the home...and she talked about them freely..which served to amuse me.

All of this served to make me wonder, where will I be when I'm old, and what will be the creature comforts that make me happy? Some of the rooms were filled with pictures of family. Others had lots of curio-kitties, or ceramic birds. A few rooms had fresh flowers and a well chosen Oil on the walls. Everyone was dressed for comfort and convenience.

I contemplated my future life in a nursing home. I do not know a day that I do not wear a button down shirt, that requires a good pressing before wearing. I wear cologne. No ironing...no time for that in a home. No cologne...someone may be allergic. No coffee. People who don't talk, just sit in the halls in wheelchairs. I couldn't do it. Would I even be allowed to have a bookcase filled with a few of my favorite volumes? Probably not, they attract dust, which is a huge no-no.

I've decided I will be old at home. I will die behind a reference desk at a ripe old age; much to the astonishment of the patron who will be asking me a question when my ticker deicides to quit. Drama ensues. I love it.

I will not have my life taken away. Grandma is happy. She had 7 kids, and she said she is done fussing and being a care taker, she says its time for someone to take care of her. While she is in a great place, I know its not the one for me.

Moral of this blog: Why am I worried? I plan on celebrating my 29th birthday the rest of my life....

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