Izzy and I set out this morning on a visit to see Great-Grandpa. He hasn't been doing so well these past few days so I knew not to pack any lunch for him, just lots of healthy choices for Izzy since it could turn into a long day.
En route, my brother called to report that Grandpa was on his way to the hospital. He has been having great difficulty swallowing and we had been holding out hope that the problem would correct itself. When he still couldn't eat this morning, E. knew it was time to take action.
We arrived at 11 a.m. and he was already in the emergency room. I mistakenly took Izzy in with me, only to discover that Grandpa's roommate's state could be deemed frightening to children, not to mention the other goings-on in the ER. We promptly returned to the waiting room where I left Izzy with family as we all took turns sitting with Grandpa, who looked so pale and frail, hooked up to the I.V.
As the day wore on Izzy occupied himself by writing the numbers from 1 to 1000 and constructing vehiciles from mini-Lego Kits. He also nibbled on broccoli bread, prunes, bananas and some ultra healthy cookies (recipe to come shortly). He was truly cooperative and helpful, a joy to have around.
As it neared 4 p.m., I suggested we take a walk to get some air. Izzy insisted that he wanted to see Great-Grandpa before we left. I told him that we would wait and see but that a walk for ice cream might refresh us(even though it goes against my "no ice cream in winter" policy). He finally gave in and joined me for a quick trip to Thomas Sweet's. We both gobbled down far too much ice cream and I had the shivers on our walk back.
Back at the hospital, it was getting later and later. I had planned to leave by 5:30 but Izzy broke down in tears, saying that he would not leave until he could see Great-Grandpa, who had still not been moved to a private room (awful hospital UGH). We had been there all day waiting. I figured he had a point. I discovered that we could close off his area with a curtain and I brought Izzy in, with his eyes covered.
He and his Great-Grandpa held hands and Grandpa, in his froggy voice, told him the story of the Rabbi, The Rabbi's Wife and the 55 children, a story he used to tell me when I was little. They bonded and Izzy surveyed the situation. He did not seem frightened at all and did not rush to leave.
I hesitated to leave but it was late for Izzy to be out and I knew my brothers would be there. We ran to catch the train and Izzy was full of questions on the ride home. He kept commenting that it was his first visit to a hospital and I pointed out that it was Great-Grandpa's first time being admitted to one in 99 years! I do hope and pray that he makes it home soon and they solve his swallowing problem. Everyone wants our Grandfather around for his 100th birthday in May.