Umbrella, Top Hat, Man on a Bicycle.
Was that right? It might have been top hat, man on a bicycle, umbrella. I can’t remember the exact order. Heck, I’m glad I can remember the three things. I wasn’t there the day they were presented to my father. I have heard them since, and I often have worried because I could not remember the words. I remember them now, just not sure the order.
After many doctor visits, my father, sibling, and mother found themselves in a doctor’s office talking. The doctor told my father three things to remember – Umbrella, Top Hat, and Man on a Bicycle.
Then he asked him the date, who the President was, and things of that nature. He would ask Dad if he remembered the words. Again, I was not in the room and this is hearsay but I think Dad could name the three things the first time he was asked. Then he and the doctor had a long conversation about whatever highly intelligent people talk about.
The doctor liked Dad. Dad liked the doctor. It was a pleasant experience. That is, it was pleasant until the doctor finally asked my father for the three things and my father could not answer.
That was the day there was an official diagnosis, though they really don’t say it is a diagnosis. There is no definitive test after all. That was the day there was a course of action to take.
Dad started to take the drugs that help slow down the effects of the disease. I think they worked. I think they were worth the effort. If you know anyone who is prescribed those drugs, I recommend filling the prescription.
Still, it did not stop the progression of the disease. It did not alter the effects. There was a pill to take every day (probably with its own side effects), but the synapsis weren’t all of the sudden fired back up. They weren’t making the connections they had failed to make the day before.
Now we knew what we were facing, we had a course of action to take, what we didn’t have was cure.