My daddy is a very gentle man!
HUH? You might be asking yourself. Well...daddy was always extremely gentle. He was tender. He never, and I mean never, raised his voice. He laughed easily and had a great sense of humor. He treated everyone that way.
Have you noticed, though, that many people fit that same description? Most of us know how to "put on" our outward responses to events. Most of us can "keep it together" around others, or at least those we work with or strangers. It might only be in the safety of our own home that we might let loose...let it all hang out. Ben and I for years have called that the "thin veneer of civility". We all have it to different degrees of thicknesses!
But once your mental capabilities begin to fade, you begin to loose that ability to "put on" that civility. You just are what you are. You loose that ability to recognize things in others' faces that might have stopped you from doing or saying something before. In reality, the veneer is gone, and the real you shines through.
In these latter days as daddy has begun succumbing to the wiles of Alzheimer's, his real nature is shining through. I am so proud to say that daddy is still a gentle man! That is who he really is! To the core...gentle! He still has a great sense of humor. He is still tender. And every time I see him when I ask him if he knows who I am, he smiles, leans toward me and whispers, "You are my Lisa." and gives me a kiss.
I treasure that...I will never forget that...and it makes me want to try to be nicer while I have that veneer, so that when it's gone, it really is who I am.