I was surprised Dad was calling back so soon. We had just hung up after a pleasant chat a few minutes earlier and all had been well. I instantly heard the stress in his voice as he said, “Can you come over here? Mom’s fallen.”
In a few minutes I was standing over Mom. She was sitting in the doorway of her bedroom, hollering and wanting help. But she didn’t know what to do or how to follow our directions. After her last fall we had ordered a special padded gait belt, with handles sewn in to help those lifting a fallen person. I managed to buckle it on Mom and tighten it, but when I tried to lift her I couldn’t budge her.
Dad had already called my youngest brother, who had just left their house after having lunch with them, and was on his way back to work. Thankfully he soon arrived, and the two of us were able to lift Mom easily. I then shooed the guys out while I cleaned up Mom and changed her. And then dear brother scrubbed up the mess she’d left on the floor.
I sat and visited with Mom and Dad for a bit. And then I drove home thinking how grateful I am for my baby brother. I’m twelve years older than him and I thought he was adorable when he was born, even though I was sorely disappointed that he wasn’t the sister I was longing for. As I got older he became that pesky little brother who wanted attention when my friends were over.
And now that pesky little brother has turned into my best ally in this whole Alzheimer battle. He brings Mom and Dad lunch every day. He visits with them and does little chores and errands and takes Dad grocery shopping every week. He works for my other younger brother, who owns his own company, and who gives J. freedom to take long lunch breaks and help out our folks.
And I think, with tears in my eyes, how very grateful I am for pesky little brothers who grow to be men of integrity, faithfully and quietly doing what needs doing. Every day.