annanotbob2's Diaryland Diary


Record still intact

It's been a tough couple of days, due to being weighed down with knackeredness both emotional and physical and somehow failing to notice that I should have been mainly lying down.

Yesterday I went with Bloke to visit his dad who lives in a dementia care home about thirty miles away. FIL can't remember who I am but he remembers that he doesn't like me - you can see it all flickering across his face as he narrows his eyes and examines me closely. "You're still here then," was all he came up with this time - nowhere near the quality of, "You look as if you've been around a bit," on my Christmas visit. He's correct on both counts: I am still here and I have been around a bit. He thinks I'm a whore for having children by different fathers of different races before living with his son for decades, unmarried. I think he's a git for having endlessly banged on to Bloke about the kind of son he'd always hoped for (sporty, ambitious for a big salary, house etc) instead of the one he got. I don't mind visiting him now, though I'd reached a point when I wouldn't have him in my house, back before the dementia set in, when he was choosing what to say. Now he's a frail 91 year-old whose opinion means nothing to me - I have bigger fish to fry. Bloke hates going but feels guilty when he hasn't for a while so I'm initiating it when there's been a gap of a month. If he can get himself there more often or if there's an end to "I should go and see Dad," then I'll step away again. Of course it's hideous in many respects - a tangled web of emotional responses to FIL's situation and ED's.

I'm up to hers again on Wednesday to take her to an appointment the ward sister has made for her, which she describes as 'counselling'. I'm getting quite wound up about this, I realise. ED is not remotely capable of engaging in a conversation about anything. Her neurotransmitter has been so damaged by the MS that only tiny thoughts flicker to and fro. And the ward sister knows this, surely? But her English, while fluent, is so heavily accented that I struggle to understand her although counselling is definitely the word she's using. Ach, I'll take ED and we'll find out. I've googled the place and it doesn't have its own website but all sorts of psychological work goes on there, so maybe something good will come of it. Son is coming with us - we'll collect him from the station and he can sit in the back of the van with ED and hold her hand while giving me directions from his clever phone.

On the way home from FIL's there's a forest so Bloke and I stopped off for a wander. It had been chucking it down with rain all day, leaving everything fresh and misty in the late afternoon sun:

Bloke looks like a bird sometimes. I called him a grey-tufted bird-botherer, which I found more amusing than he did:

I've resolved my wedding wear problem by remembering that one of my festival gang of stoner grannies is actually a dress-maker by trade. She going to make me a dress in grey 'floppy' silk using this pattern , although we haven't committed to the pattern yet. When I followed the link back to others in the same range I wondered if 8871 or 8808 wouldn't be more suitable for someone of my size. That one looks great in the sketch, but that's a scrawny kind of a person they've drawn there - it won't hang like that on me. I'm quite substantial. And I'm not altogether keen on something tight enough to require a slit up the back.

Today I had what I hope to be the first of many chats with a woman Young Dementia UK put me in touch with, who has a 45 year old son at quite an advanced stage. We cried a bit. She was cool - straight in, no messing, funny. We both know what it is to miss someone who's still there, to have an adult child provoking the same maternal urge to protect and serve and sooth as does a baby.

Then Bloke and I went up the allotment where he did digging and I drifted around to little purpose.

Today I am grateful for: my mother's day gift from YD of loads of her homemade fish-cakes for the freezer, fucking perfect, to have real food with no hassle; Bloke's digging - he really cracks on; maintaining my 100% record of getting through bad days; feeling supported in Real Life and on t'internet; fleecy insoles in my wellies

Sweet dreams xxxx

2:15 a.m. - 22.04.14


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