(Disclaimer: I have not seen the movie The Curious Case of Benjamin Button since it came out and I have not read the short story, I may be wrong and I may give out spoilers)
This is my grandma and she is a powerhouse, don’t let her 4′ 10” stature fool you.
And I love her a lot. She took care of me from birth to toddlerhood and always believed in me. Though there is a bit of a language and topic barrier, I always feel her love when I’m with her.
She has turned the corner of 90 and she reminds me of the movie The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. A lot of older people do actually. Sliding into dementia, she has this childlike look on her face. More often than not, we guide her, remind her that she needs to take her meds, and then do it all over again the next day.
Remind. While my grandma remembers names to the faces, there are times when she asks me to remind her that I’m Thu and to confirm that I’m her daughter’s daughter. In the movie Benjamin Button, Benjamin ages younger but gets older in the soul. Toward the end, he starts to forget everything from his earlier life. Reminding is something I need when I forget to do my homework, something I need to remember a date or birthday- something I never thought I would need when thinking of memories. And yes, she does have memories, she remembers some odds and ends but never fully, her attention span is limited so a story is often cut short before she has another question for me.
I look at my grandma and I’ve been wondering at those exact moments, “What is she thinking right now?” What does she think when mom and I were helping her get a bank account? What about the DMV? What does she see when she looks at the TV? Is it different every time she wakes up? Is it different every other day? It’s both scary and intriguing.