Keith has always been pretty strong. Even now, with PD, he is still stronger than most of his PD peers were/are at this point. He likes to prove to himself and others that he's still got it by arm wrestling and participating in several other macho-chest-pounding male games. But I noticed something last week . . . .
Keith and I had purchased some baby furniture for my sister. Since Keith had to leave for work, he unloaded it off his truck so that my dad could pick it up and deliver it to my sister's house. I noticed that Keith struggled a bit to unload the furniture from his truck. I don't know that it was an issue of strength alone - I think it was a combination of having become a bit weaker and struggling to get his left hand and arm to do what he wants it to do. So I helped him unload the stuff and off to work he went. Half and hour later my dad showed up ready to load his own truck with everything. At that point, I hadn't even thought twice about helping Keith - it's just something I do. I know he could have done it himself, but I love him and wanted to help, especially since I could see that he was struggling with it. So I asked my dad if he wanted my help, and of course, he said no. Then he quickly and effortlessly picked up both items and placed them in the bed of his truck. It dawned on me for the first time then just how different Keith is from other guys.
Now, I realize that most men don't want to be compared to their fathers-in-law, and it really could have been anyone. My dad just happened to be the available person with a truck that day. But it really hit home to me that Keith's strength is declining. He really does have to struggle more than everyone else when it comes to even the simplest things. It doesn't stop him, but it does slow him down. I really need to make sure that I am available to him if he needs me, but without compromising his dignity. Hope I can pull that off . . . .