The joke as told by my husband, "I will be the only 90 year old man
taking his 120 year old father to the doctor."
Here I sit, between the family rock and the hard place. I don't recall ever fixing anything and my humor has always been questionable. So, what is my contribution? My job is witness. I have been a willing witness to the fixing and the humor for over forty-one years, but never more so than the last few weeks.
Both of these traits were called into question with the recent family troubles leading to the death of my father-in-law.
When my father-in-law became ill, the Montanans circled the wagons, put their heads together and tried to come up with solutions to fix things. Now, in this family fixing usually requires J.B. Weld. I've seen my father-in-law use it to fix his dentures, but it's never been tried on the human heart. Although it was suggested.
In the last week, my father-in-law fell out of bed several times. "Got a solution?" he asked. Duct tape was the collective response. "That should work," was his answer. They did what they could.
He suffered two strokes and three heart attacks in the seven days leading up to his death. After the strokes, he choked. He choked on everything including water. To combat this, the doctor had a thickener added to his fluids and food. Stop him eating and drinking too fast, they thought. My father-in-law hated this.
"Louie, what would you like to drink?" the nurse asked.
"Whiskey," my father-in-law replied.
"Whiskey?" the surprised nurse asked.
"Yep," he answered. "I never cared for whiskey, so if you're going to ruin something it might as well be something I don't like."
His mind was razor sharp to the very end, and as you can see, so was his sense of humor. It is appropriate to smile here! He would have encouraged it. These would have been some of his favorite stories. I am witness to this.