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Visiting Eleanor
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Today the three of us headed down to the suburbs of Chicago (Burr Ridge to be specific) to visit my paternal Grandmother Eleanor. The last time I saw her was the Christmas before I was pregnant so a visit was long overdue. She's now in an assisted living facility near Chicago so that my Dad and his wife can get to see her more easily. It's about a two hour trip each way. We were planning on also meeting up with Dad and Sheryl there as well.

Rob, Gabriel, and I arrived first. We headed to her room and I was shocked by what I saw. She was nothing like she was the last time I saw her. She's in the rehab part of the facility and was just crumpled on her bed. Dad warned me that she's suffering from dementia and might not even know who we were. I lucked out at first and she knew who I was and was able to understand who Gabriel was as well. Shortly after we arrived Dad and Sheryl arrived. We stayed in the room with my Grandma for awhile and then called an attendent to put her in a wheelchair so that we could go into a common room that had a bit more room to it.

We were there for a little over two hours and it was nice to be able to spend time with my Grandma and my Dad and Sheryl. There were times when Grandma was less than lucid, but oddly enough I kind of understood some of the things she was saying. A lot of it was confusing things that had happened with current events. Such as telling us there was a gambling room downstairs, but that she usually stays across the street (she used to go to Vegas a lot and I knew she was talking about Vegas). She also had a hard time expressing what she wanted to which seemed like she was babbling, but I was able to follow it. There were times when she forgot who I was, but there were also times when she knew. During the more lucid times she really seemed to like Gabriel. She wanted to hold him but couldn't because she was in no condition to hold a squirmy baby, but didn't understand that and it killed me to not let her hold him.

I'm so glad we went down there, but now I know that nursing homes are one of the circles of hell. It's depressing and sucks to see her in a place like that and I now totally understand why my Mom has her Mother living with her and won't put her in an assisted living facility. And this was one of the nicer ones out there! It was so sad, at one point two women stopped Rob and asked him where they were and when their family was coming. They told them that they had been parked in front of the TV and just left there. He talked to them for a bit and got one of the nurses to help them. Gabriel was a big hit and a lot of the residents really liked him. It was cool to see him bring a smile to many people's faces.

Now that we're living out here I'd like to make more trips down to see her. She just turned 96 and she's not doing well at all. Whether or not she knows who we are, I think it does good for her to see us, especially Gabriel. When I hugged her as we left it was all I could do to not cry.

Dad and Sheryl headed out when we did and we went our separate ways. We headed to Brown's Chicken for dinner. It is by far the best fried chicken ever. Rob had never had it and I hadn't had it in about 20 years so we needed a stop there. We grabbed dinner and brought some chicken home with us as well. Rob agreed about it being amazing chicken.

We had a bit of an incident on the way home. One of the tolls wouldn't turn green for us. The toll was 80c and we put that in four times and it still didn't turn green, so we just went through (not much else we could do). A flash went off and a picture was taken and I know those tickets for running through a toll are insane. So, if we get a ticket we'll need to try and find out how to contest it so that we don't end up getting stuck with a huge ass fine or any penalties because we paid the damn toll four times over!

The tolls surprised me a bit. As a kid I remember them being 40c (a quarter, a dime, and a nickel). Now one was 80c one was $1 and one was $1.50. Insane.

The Bears lost the Superbowl. Suck.


Your Inner Muse is Euterpe
You are most like this muse of music.
While you may or may not be musical...
You love music and set life to your own personal soundrack.
And you are good at making anyone's heart sing!

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