R: Stand up tall. Great job. Walk right into the walker.
I motion with my hands for CR to close the distance between his body and his walker.
R: The more you stand within the walker the better your posture, the better your balance. The more you're working on your balance, the sooner you're done with the walker.
I reach out and push the large automated door button on the hallway wall. Heavy fire doors swing slowly open in time for CR to glide through with his walker. I've just pushed Phyl's wheelchair through the various spaces of this large complex with CR in tow. Physical Therapy had him outside working on curbs and uneven surfaces earlier and he wants to walk more. Now Phyl is taking a nap and I'm escorting him back to his room. I'm constantly watching for lapses in stamina.
R: Stand tall. Get your spine straight. I'm not saying all this just to bitch at you about random things.
He self corrects in one small motion, walking more upright, concentration animating his face. He's thinking hard about his place in space.
CR: I would never mistake anything you say as random.
I take a step behind him and double over laughing. A belly laugh that echoes through the hall.
R: In all these years [I pause for more laughing] that's the nicest thing you've ever said to me.
CR stops. He's laughing now too; balancing, barely holding the walker. Standing tall.
We laugh together hard for another minute.
No matter how old you are it is great to be really seen.