There he goes with that calendar again. Every day we go through this.
Today Charlie is looking at "Prevention" magazine. "It says here men should have a teeth cleaning once a year. We need to schedule me for a cleaning," he proclaims.
I respond, "You just had one three weeks ago," and Charlie gets out the calendar.
"Oh yes, and I have one scheduled on April 17th, at the VA."
"No Charlie. The VA doesn't do dental work. You have one scheduled in three months with Dr. so-and-so." (The VA appointment is for a medical follow-up.)
"Who's Dr. so-and-so? Have I ever been to him before? And we have to make sure and tell him I have Delta Dental."
"He knows that Charlie. It's on your records."
"But we have to remind him. He might forget." He flips the pages of the calendar again. "When's my next dental appointment?"
"Charlie," I say, beginning to raise my voice. "We just talked about that."
"I know, but I have to make sure I keep you grumpy." Still flipping the calendar back and forth, he says, "I have a dentist appointment on June 17. It's at 3:30 – I don't like 3:30 appointments. See if you can change that."
"That's the only time they had available, Charlie."
"Well, if they call, see if you can change it."
Back to the calendar he goes. "Chuck and Marlis have an appointment at Dr. so-and-so's on June 17. Is that correct? What's that for?"
"It's for a cleaning Charlie." (The dentist has him on a four-month schedule because of gum problems.)
"Oh, but I need one at least once a year." (He had one in February.)
Well – you see what I go through. This all happened in a ten minute time period, and it goes on, all day, every day. As I've said before, he is obsessed with his teeth. We no sooner get home from the dentist and he tells me he needs an appointment.
I have to wonder how much longer I am going to keep my sanity. At least he hasn't lost his sense of humor—yet. HE WANTS TO MAKE SURE HE KEEPS ME GRUMPY! Well he's doing a good job of that.
I turn on "Family Feud" to get his mind off the dentist—for a few minutes.
Sometimes he reminds of the Dustin Hoffman character in the movie, "Rain Man;" over and over with the same obsessive fixation on one subject, usually related to his calendar.
I realize that the calendar helps to keep him grounded in time and place—or does it just add to the confusion?
I have tried hiding it – he gets panicky. He keeps a calendar in every room, but the one beside his recliner in the living room is his life-line.
I guess I should just be thankful that he can still read and write. There may come a day when even that is lost.