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Be My Valentine



My friend here is a blind man named Ramon. His English is better than my Spanish but he says my voice is music to his ears and says he hears me in his dreams. He asked me to be his girlfriend. I said no one has asked me that for years. I said I am old ill and ugly. He said he was told I am looking young and pretty so We are beauty and the beast. In reality I only have brief visits in passing. He asked me to move into his room once but I explained it was not allowed and wondered why he seemed not to know this. So I disappointed him again with the same reason. I felt guilty for engaging in visiting only encouraging him. Yet I never saw him at activities or in the dining hall. So I stopped by his room on the path to the dining room to talk in the hallway. He would ask someone to push his wheelchair to my room where I would stand in the doorway to chat. He sometimes went to bingo looking for me. They never sat us together. It was clear they frowned on friendships like that but another man old enough to be my father would say he was delighted to sit where he could see my pretty face, painted me a pumpkin, and gave me a chocolate bunny. So this year I gave him a valentines little card and a dark chocolate candy kiss. Just like when I was a girl in school. In fact I gave out a box full. 16 valentines stickers given to the people I like. For residents. Only one staff. I figured we residents alone need to be reminded.


So no I am not smitten with anyone. not even a crush although one young man is like my son I say always helpful. I am no cougar. One lady asked if I was lonely or had those feelings. I said my leg always hurt and that pain ruined all of my life. Besides I only missed discussions with people lively conversation. My numbed mind was dormant and needed a rose.


But I did have one adventure. There is a man my age here dying of cancer. One night he asked me to share a chicken carcas half ful of meat that a woman left at her table. I was grateful and got my chicken and conversation. I loved looking into his pretty blue eyes and really laughing at his wit and humor not just polite smiles. And we seemed to be sneaking so it had danger in the mix. Then people were talking. And then the owner of the chicken was mad the kitchen staff had not saved her leftovers. Someone gave her my name so when she came to me I offered to reimburse her. However strangely she did not want money. she wanted the name of the man who took her chicken. I said I do not know it and lied unrepentantly believing I protected him from a usually unpleasant woman. Today I know the home paid her back so there is no victim here but friendship. He stopped coming to dining room. so did I. We stopped chatting at art class. His shy bumbling and some haunting shame. I lost interest in his disinterest. The walk to the dining room is hard.


But on valentines day party I dressed as if dining out putting on too muuch make up. I found out that Ramon was again not on the list. He had not been informed of the party. He was good to go in a red shirt and scruff. He was thrilled but at the door they wheeled him away to a corner and sat me at a table for two with a woman I liked. I told them do not put him alone they said oh he going to be with someone. I reminded he blind. But they would not sit me there. So then the woman did not sho up so I called over a nurse and said I am alone and so is he so can you bring him to my table. She did. I saw all the fuss and whispers. It was salmon. When I saw him struggle with spoon. I said this is finger food. he smiled and ate good. I popped a few pieces in my mouth too. I have eaten in all kinds of places. so has Ramon. He had a life too befoe stroke made him blind.


But as fun as it was with Ramon I admit I glanced over at the blue eyed one and pondered how the inaccessible has such a draw. And how I still love to shock and awe even old ill and ugly. I love a good flirt more than anything.


But love. that seems a long ways from shore. The youthful angst kind plus the deep trust companion kind. My friend said you cannot be picky now and I said I have never been slutty. I like to be admired and that means being admirable.
I hugged my stuffed animal and missed some really good bears I have had. Thought about the caddy woman story always is around. Sad that the only thing important is to not have pain.


But I still will give them something to talk about.

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Pam, we are women so we like a little attention, we are alone so we learn to live with that.  I have had y name coupled with a few people but to me they are just friends.  friendship is all i am interested in but sometimes have a fancy for more than that.  I am old too but a little flirting, a little smiling, a little laughter makes me feel young again, just for a little while. :)

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