I wipe my Vivian's mouth and adjust her pillow. Her eyes follow me but there is no conscious reaction to my effort to make her comfortable. It has been three years now since a stroke stole her from me. Three years since I last heard her speak softly and sweetly, three years since I knew any comfort from her gentle and kind hands. I sit down at the piano and begin to play. Moonlight Sonata. It's heavy and plodding notes begin to fill the room. I play seriously and thoughtfully. Since the day my wife became landlocked in her own mind, she has had no visible reaction to anything around her. Except when I play the piano. When I play, there is a noticeable shift, something is rekindled within her mind, I know it. I know she can hear me and I know she knows I play for her. It is a small comfort but if this can give her some clear joy. To be helpless is the worst part of watching and for a few moments I feel a little less helpless.
28 October 2013