Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Conversation switch

It is a dangerous thing to listen to only one side of a conversation.

I wasn't eavesdropping at all. Tammy was talking on her cell phone to her dad in Florida. She was sitting in my classroom and at one point was walking up my stairs to the classroom, coming from outside smoking. What I heard caused my head to turn decidedly.
She was talking to Jim about her mom (his former wife) and her condition. Carol has Alzheimer's Disease and resides in a nursing home here in Lexington, where she is under our supervision. They were talking about how she is never going to be any better than she is right now. I was hearing this one side of the conversation without really listening. It was more background noise than anything else. Suddenly, I hear, "It might be better to just put her down, since she isn't getting any better." WHAT ?!?!?!?

I asked Tammy if we were still talking about Carol.

She laughed. No, they had switched in the conversation to talking about Docey, a 16 year old chihuahua that belonged to Jim and Carol, before Carol came to be with us. Apparently, Docey is getting worse and losing control of her body. She is quite sick. Tammy suggested that it might be time to 'put her down'.

It was just that in hearing only tammy's side of the conversation, I missed the switch from Carol to Docey. It seemed that they were now talking about the best thing for Carol was to put her down. While I will agree that Carol can be a handful at times, and she can be irritating and contrite, I don't see the need to put her out of our misery.

Still yet, that is one of the dangers of hearing only one side of a rapidly switching conversation.

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