“Sharla,” Grandma said as I squeezed through her doorway and heaved the collection of bulging grocery bags onto her counter, “I’m glad you’re here. Your grandfather doesn’t recognize me and keeps telling me that I’m not his wife.”
“Oh no,” I said, rubbing the red semi-circles that indented my arms where the plastic bags had dug into my skin. “That is so sad.”
“Sharla!” Grandpa said as he walked into the living room. “Well! What a surprise.”
“I brought all the groceries you requested,” I told him.
“Well, I just can’t believe this!” He smiled and hugged me. “You showing up like this in the middle of the day!”
“I know,” I rolled with it, even though two o’clock was my usual time to stop by their apartment.
“I was just telling Sharla what has been going on here,” Grandma told Grandpa. “I explained how you think that I’m not your wife.”
“What?” Grandpa asked, adjusting his hearing aids.
Repeating only the last part of her prior sentence, and greatly adding to the confusion, Grandma shouted, “I’m not your wife.”
“That’s right,” Grandpa nodded.
“Grandma,” I whispered as I pulled her aside, “sometimes it’s probably better to just play along with whatever he says. I know it has to be hard and scary when he doesn’t recognize you, but it will only aggravate him if we try to correct him.”
“Well I know that, Sharla,” she rolled her eyes. “But, since he thinks I’m not his wife, he won’t let me into the bedroom, and I have to go through the bedroom to get to the bathroom. I can’t hold it much longer.”
She raises a valid point.