This year, as we prepared our holiday meals, it became apparent to me that Rick was having a lot of trouble following the recipes. I'm not sure what that means exactly. For a long time, his deficit has been mainly finding the right word to say and understanding words that were spoken to him. During the neuro checks at his oncology appointments, he usually has no problem with numbers, or reading words, or spelling words- even spelling them backwards.
So this is new.
Maybe I didn't notice before because, though Rick is the primary cook in our house, he usually isn't following a recipe. One of his thousands of amazing talents is his ability to create beautiful, delicious meals from experience or instinct or creative imagination or whatever that magical stuff is that makes people great cooks.
Maybe I didn't notice before because I rarely spend time in the kitchen. We have definitely settled into our comfortable roles of Rick as meal preparer and me as table setter and meal enjoyer. In years past I have to admit experiencing twinges of guilt as Rick spent the majority of his time in the kitchen preparing the feasts. Offers of help were usually declined; I think Rick probably enjoyed spending time alone in his kitchen when the house is crowded with holiday hoopla.
Maybe I just didn't want to notice before that Rick's symptoms might be getting worse.
So this year was different. In a good way, I'd say. We planned a Mexican feast for Christmas Eve and traditional favorites for Christmas Dinner. We made creative turkey leftovers in the days after Christmas. This year we did it together. It was a gift to get to spend time in the kitchen with Rick, helping him do what he still does best.
Just wanted to put some gratitude out into the universe.