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  • Jim lives in a world of perfect order. He goes to dialysis 3 times a week, has attendant care from breakfast through dinner, an entourage of therapists, visiting nurses, social workers, and a loving mom, seven-days-a-week. I’m getting exhausted just thinking about the complexity of his orderly world. Oh, I almost forgot, church on Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday, and friends over for TV and games every Tuesday and Thursday evening.

    What’s nice about Jim’s world is that he lives without the complications of yesterday and tomorrow. He gets up every day and his conscious stream of thought, seems to starts over, almost completely. He often does not remember what he ate for dinner, or being angry with his mother, feeling rejected or forgotten by friends - any pain of yesterday, or what he will feel tomorrow. It just doesn’t matter.

    One of his favorite therapies is music. The therapist has Jim make up his own songs, rehearse and perform them, in order to stimulate his memory, and improve his speech. She is very patient with him, starting the process over from the beginning each session.

    September 11 for most of us, brings back memories of the horrific events of 2001, but for Jim this year, September 11th was the day of his annual music recital. His audience was made up of all his agency caseworkers, therapists, the singles church group, his girlfriend (she has her recital with his), her parents, Ann and me.

    For this recital Jim had written two new songs to tell everyone what was really important to him, what he did remember that day; the first “Pretty Lady --- Come on Over” and the second “Cheeseburger with Mayonnaise and Chips”.
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