Feeding him now is no fun – not that feeding an adult man, your brother at that, ever was - but now it’s particularly difficult. He’s prone to aggressive outbursts and shouting – something unlike anything he has ever done. I’ve gotten a few smacks to the head (some likely deserved) just like the old days when brothers fought like brothers should. You share a bedroom with someone for 15 years and the odd racket is bound to happen. He was a good scrapper too who could handle himself back in the day. Tough as nails. Christ, that seems like forever ago.
Visits in general are getting more difficult too. Thursday was especially hard. He kept shouting, asking for Mom who’s been gone almost seven years now. Sometimes he knows this; most times he doesn’t. Music is rarely played anymore, a mainstay of our visits. That is likely the most difficult part of this. Music was so important to our relationship – the bind that helped me get through this shit - and now it’s gone. Jesus.
And the outlook isn’t promising, to be honest. It never really was I suppose, but now there’s an underlying sense of urgency. Things are deteriorating rapidly and they aren’t going to get better. When doctors and staff talk of feeding tubes and comfort care, you know tougher times lie ahead. I’m going to have to make some difficult decisions about his care. I’m hoping later than sooner. For both of our sakes.