'Lost in Time'
‘I remember my childhood, but I remember little of the last twenty years.’
I look at Henry as he’s talking, my gaze flitting across to his wife, Mabel, as she sits back on the sofa. This is so new to all of us. Eight months ago Henry’s memory was great and he and Mabel lived happily on a handful of acres in a country town. Now they live in a small cottage in Perth, closer to family and doctors.
‘So what do you remember?’ I ask, curiosity getting the better of me, and hoping our long friendship will eclipse my directness.
‘Nothing,’ Henry says, shaking his head.
‘Do you remember us always calling around for cups of tea?’ I ask.
‘Do you remember all the times that you took our baby daughter around your garden to look at the flowers and to visit your sheep?’
‘No, but I wish I did.’
‘Do you,’ I said, grasping at anything that would trigger a recollection, ‘remember us regularly driving you to Perth in the ute?’
‘No, but I remember going. You know I don’t even remember our neighbours there.’
I stare at Mabel and laugh, a secret joke.
‘Well, I won’t take it personally,’ I say with a grin.
Both his wife and I laugh as Henry’s bewildered look changes to a smile. He points a finger at me, and when I nod his whole body shakes in laughter.
Half an hour later, as I get ready to step out the door, Henry gets carefully to his feet and envelops me in a hug so typical of him and his wife.
‘I may not remember you were our neighbour’ he says, ‘but I do remember you.’
This short story, written by Elizabeth Bezant comes from the book, Stolen Moments inspiring and unforgettable stories from people living with Alzheimers.