Mums’ world is getting smaller. Where once an afternoon of sitting at a pavement cafe, ice cream in hand, and watching the world go by would have been heaven now it is all about the ice cream. She had a little tub of chocolate and Welsh cake ( yes Welsh cake!) flavour with a little plastic green spoon. After a minute or two she said rather plaintively ” I’m not getting any”. I realised she was using the spoon as a straw. It has elements of tragi-comedy this relentless journey towards the ending of this life. Even in this week I’ve seen a change in her. I have to remind her of the boys names and which is which on the photo we gave her today from her birthday tea on Monday. She didn’t remember which room was hers when we got home. She seems to be diminishing. Each time I see her I wonder how long we have. Silly to think ike that maybe but it is there at the back of my mind all the time. I don’t want her to go, but I hope she can before the dementia takes her away.
She must have been having a conversation with someone else at the home about age and birthdays, a favourite topic! She said
” I was talking to someone else and they are 87″,
I said, “That’s like you Mum, you’re 87 now aren’t you?”.
“How can that be?” she says, “How can we be the same? I don’t feel like they are my brothers or sisters”
. She didn’t understand that being born in the same year meant being the same age. Sometimes the cognitive dips and signs of another spark in her brain that has fizzled out take me aback and I find it hard to speak for a moment.
At her party we had a lounge room to ourselves with party food laid out on a table and flowers and a big birthday balloon. Another lady , who had just moved in and was also quite confused kept wandering by and knocking at the window. We invited her in of course and she sat drinking juice and eating a sandwich. ”
Is it someones birthday?”,
Yes its Margaret’s, Margaret this is Phyllis”,
“How old is she?”,
“Margaret is 87″,
” Oh not as old as me then”,
‘How old are you?”,
” I was born in 1921″,
“That makes you 90 this year then,”
” Is it someones birthday?”,
“Yes its Margaret’s, Margaret this is Phyllis”
…….repeat ad infinitum.
You have to laugh as they say, or you’d cry.