When she said, "Today is Christmas" I hadn't asked her to recite any facts related to the Gregorian calendar or traditions of Christianity and I wasn't conducting a cognitive test of her orientation to time. When she said, "Today is Christmas" it wasn't a response to an inquiry with that three word sentence as an answer choice. She spoke those words into the phone after I stated the purpose for my call which was to establish a line of communication between doctor and homecare agency so that I could treat a disease and reduce a side effect.
You see they don't live together so it’s not the effortlessness of walking into another room. This isn't the quotidian interactions of cohabitation, and neither is it a convenient stop-by on the way home from work. This mother-daughter interaction was regular, intentional and special.
Working for years as a home care physical therapist can get monotonous at times. The energy required to be positive, empathetic, energetic and an agent of positive change in people’s lives can be difficult to summon and can be draining.