#balloons #pets #Alzheimers
One day, we decided Mom’s pet balloon-heart needed to go in the trash heap. After eight months, the heart’s helium had gone and left it deflated.
Mom reminisced about her favorite balloon antics. “Heart drifted over me and touched my face with her ribbon. Remember when she hid behind my bed? I’d wake up from a nap and she would be in front of the TV or sitting on the chair. She sure was funny.” My eyebrows rose, “A balloon with humor?” I glanced at Sis. “Well, sure.” Mom cocked her head. “Heart followed you around my room and out the door to my bathroom. Then you said she ended up in the kitchen. She’s a curious balloon.” Sis smiled.
I lifted the trailing balloon ribbon from the carpet. “Remember when heart disappeared for two days? When I set the laundry basket on the washer, I found her stuck between the wall and the dryer?” Sis and I laughed. “See what I mean?” Mom nodded and looked at Sis. “That was quite a Valentine gift you gave me. Lasted forever.”
“Are you ready to trash her?” Sis gently took the balloon from my hands. Mom grimaced, “I guess it’s time. Go ahead. Bye Heart, you gave me a lot of love and laughs.” Mom kissed the balloon.
Three days later, I glanced out our sliding door at something shiny on the lawn behind the fence and our patio. “Heart? No way.” Same silver I Love You heart—her markings were unique. She was lying on her side twisting and turning in the wind.
I hurried to Mom’s room and opened her blinds. “Mom, look what’s on the lawn.” Mom sat forward from her doze and gasped, “Is it…it is! It’s Heart! How did she get out there?” I shrugged, “I don’t know, maybe someone found her in the trash?” Mom raised her sad green eyes, “She’s looking for me. I think she misses me. I miss her.” I bit my lip, “She’s definitely a real loyal pet, but I can’t reach her, Mom. She’s behind the fence in someone else’s yard. Not only that, she’s probably dirty from the garbage bin.”
Mom watched Heart for about thirty-minutes. She looked away to get a box of tissue. When Mom looked back, Heart was gone. I promised we’d get her a new pet balloon. Mom was given three of them for her birthday—Silvie Star, Goldie, and Happy Face. Three is better than one, right?