Today has been a good one for social engagement. Angie and Tom Robinson were in town for lunch and a pleasant afternoon of conversation. We had lunch at Carla’s. They had liked it year or two ago when we had first taken them there. I am glad we went. It offered them a glimpse of why I say that eating out is a social occasion for us. We go to Carla’s frequently and know several of the restaurant staff. One of those is the manager, who stopped by our table to say hello. She ended up giving us complementary desserts. As we were about to leave, the newly retired CEO of United Way took a table next to us. We introduced him to the Robinsons, and we spoke briefly before leaving. After that we came back to the house for more conversation.
It had been a good visit. Kate participated more than she usually does. She was more animated than normal, sometimes more assertive as well. I’ll have to talk with Tom about his impressions, but I felt she handled herself well. She is changing, but she does far better in social situations than I would expect knowing how little memory she has. At one point, she asked Tom about Bruce, a mutual TCU friend and one of my former roommates. I was surprised she recalled his name. As usual, I knew that some of the things she said were figments of her imagination. They aren’t, however, the kind of things that provide an immediate alert to others that she is confused.
After they left, I told her how well I thought the visit had gone. She agreed. Then she said, “Who are they?” After I reminded her, she said, “Oh, yes, from TCU.” Part of our discussion this afternoon was about our days at TCU. I was glad to see that she still had not totally forgotten that connection. Then she asked, “Who are they again?”
She is having significantly greater trouble recalling names in the past couple of weeks. Today, she asked, “What is your name?” I find it hard to believe that she has forgotten, but that is what it sounded like when she asked the question. After I told her my name, I asked, “Now what is your daughter’s name?” She couldn’t answer. I said, “Jesse.” Then she immediately gave me Jesse’s middle name. Clearly, the first name triggered the middle name even though it is one we do not use.
The changes in her memory make me think that making another trip to Texas in the spring and a trip to Asheville for our anniversary may not happen. If that is so, there are likely to be other changes on the horizon, and not as distant as I would like.