I was sitting next to my dad in his room when he mentioned the pretty boats passing by his window. I asked him to “tell me about them” (one of his favorite phrases), and he proceeded to describe the boats. The scene he was describing sounded wonderful; the problem was, it was not actually there. In fact, his room was nowhere near water.
Parkinson’s with Lewy Body Dementia comes with hallucinations. For the most part, dad’s hallucinations had been lovely. I know that sounds weird but seeing a baseball game out your window can be quite entertaining, even if it isn’t real.
The hallucinations were something he was able to laugh about while he still had an idea that they were hallucinations. He would take me to look at a towel on the bed and say, “See, that could be a cat. Right?” “Sure”, I’d say. “That lumpy towel could look like the shape of a cat out of the corner of my eye, but when you look at it full on, you know it’s a towel, right?” He’d just smile and walk out of the room.
Dad told us many times that a tree was growing in his room. I did not go with him to look at this one. “Seriously dad, you know this can’t be real.” He kept insisting. We all kept laughing.
Fast forward to a few months later when we are moving his bed to take to his assisted living facility. My husband called me into dad’s room. There were several large weeds and a small oak tree growing out of the space where the floor met the wall behind his bed. A crack must have formed at some point. Oh. My. God. It wasn’t a hallucination. We all started cracking up.
We had to apologize to dad. He had the last laugh on this one.