Just One Step

I found out this week that a Client of mine, who’d been coming to me for her hair once a week or so for at least 20 years, is in hospice.

It all started when A__ came in for her regular appointment. She fell in the parking lot. There hadn’t been a parking place close to the building, so she parked further away than usual, and also decided not to use her cane. You can see what’s coming…she took one step and fell–hard.

I had wondered about her, she was usually early and that day, A__ hadn’t arrived at her normal 15 minutes ahead. When I went to the window and looked out, I didn’t see her. A few minutes later, she walks in aided by a nice man who’d seen her fall. A__ was very shaken up, but said she was okay to get her hair done. Hanging on to me, she made the longish walk to the shampoo area. The way back was a bit slower. By the time we had her hair fixed, she could hardly move. She called her husband to come after her, and it took two of us to help A__ get to the car while he drove up close to the door.

It turns out she had a broken pelvis and and a broken wrist.

One of her daughters, D__, called me Monday, and I thought A__ might be on the mend and need her hair done. Sadly, D___ told me she’d come up from Houston because they’d been told that A__ had only 24-48 hours to live.

Evidently, A__ had gone to the ER after leaving the salon, and they checked her over and sent her home. Didn’t find a break anywhere. I guess because of the swelling. But a friend stopped by her home to visit, and saw she was in pretty bad shape, then called a medical person she knew, who arranged to get A__ back to the hospital where they properly diagnosed her. She went through a series of health problems while she was in the hospital and later, nursing home.

D__ came in and got her hair trimmed and styled, because her mother, A__, had asked her to take part in eulogizing at the funeral. I told her how much I thought of her mom, and while we visited, I told her I hoped I hadn’t contributed to her downfall by going ahead with her hair appointment. She said I hadn’t, and not to feel guilty…which, when someone tells me that, it’s like telling the sun not to set.

I remind myself that A__ seemed to gather her senses, and be in her right mind when she said she wanted to go ahead and get her hair done. D__ said it’s been a good story, that she was so determined.


I am sad to see A__ go. She is such a sweet person. God speed.

2 Comments on “Just One Step”

  1. Bonnie says:

    That’s so sad, April! But D is right: A is a very determined lady and if she wanted to have her hair done, she wanted it DONE. And it IS a good story and shows the spirit of a tough woman! You did not contribute to her demise.

    Your heart is sweet and good, so you feel responsible. But you aren’t! Imagine if it had been a less caring hairstylist, one who wouldn’t feel the loss of such a personality, one who would just open up the slot in her calendar without a second thought.

    That other hairstylist could never remember A like you will, and that’s what we all want: to be remembered.

  2. desperatewriter says:

    Thanks, Bonnie. 🙂 Aileen passed Thursday.

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