The street where I live...

The street where I live...

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Not a Love Letter

It is the eve of the twins' fourth birthday.  And in the great tradition I have established here (ie. I did it last year) my intention was to use this forum to write a little birthday love message to my beautiful babies.  But to be honest, this day has been one for the memoirs.  I am so spent my head feels hot and prickly. I am emotionally wrung out.  If I wasn't such a complete weakling I would punch a wall or something equally dramatic but childish and futile.  So I'll take the weakling's way out and blog about it.

J is away on business.  Last night, at 3 am, I was jarred awake by a slamming door on the ground floor of our house, which is where MIL lives.  I got up and met her on the stairs.  She was clearly shaken and wanted to know how to get a key to lock out all these people who keep coming into the house.  These people are, of course, conjured by her dementia.  And the detail in her delusions is impressive.

Last night there were, according to MIL, people in the gallery space we have on the main floor and they were looking at all her stuff.  There were men in her bed and women messing up her clothes.  But the really good part of the story was her insistence that she had followed the people down the hill to a trailer where  they were playing games like bingo and cards, but by the time she got in there everyone was asleep.  Now, it has been snowing for two days and I hadn't shoveled outside, so when I asked her how she managed to walk down the hill without getting any snow on her she said something about having really good snow boots.  I walked around the house several times with MIL, to reassure her that all the people were gone.  I brought her upstairs, gave her some water, tried all the techniques - going along with the delusions, explaining the medical details of her condition, trying not to belittle her no matter how tired and frustrated I might become.  I finally got her settled back into bed and was back asleep by 4:30.  At 6 am I was awoken by O and a nightmare about being bitten in the belly by a crocodile.  I was finally able to get back to sleep and Z woke us all at 8:30.

MIL is running dangerously low on meds and tomorrow is the twins' birthday, so our plan for today was to go into the bigger town to replenish the medicine and cake making cabinets.  But there was a "heavy snowfall" warning issued for our area, and I just couldn't risk the drive.  We stayed home instead and MIL continued to be agitated, aggressive and confused all day.

My patience ran out when MIL noticed a petticoat hanging on the back of my bedroom door.  I had this garment made for me as part of a really important costume.  I use it on stage and for special appearances.  MIL insisted the petticoat was hers, that I had taken it, that she has had it for twenty years.  I am working on two hours worth of sleep right now, and I just didn't have it in me to go along with this particular delusion.  "This is MY costume piece.  It has NOTHING to do with you!"  Every time my back was turned MIL would sneak back into the bedroom and say: "Sweetie [patronizing tone], I don't know how you can say that this is yours when I have had one just like it for twenty years.  I mean, it was a different colour.  You must've bleached it."

I decided to escape and take the kids down to our local eatery for a special tea event.  If you have ever had a high tea you will know that it consists of about a million percent of the recommended daily cream and sugar intake.  So by the time we left the restaurant I was dealing with two Tasmanian Devils.

Our walk home includes one steep hill with a dangerous blind corner.  The girls were just horrible as they insisted on running away from me on the hill, balancing precariously on the side of a steep drop, jumping in deep snow, and in an impressive final  move O decided that she wanted to "crawl" up the last bit.  I was so frustrated that I ended up half dragging her by her hood for a few steps to get her out of blind corner danger.

So perhaps this explains why I don't really feel like writing a love letter to my kids at this exact moment.  But it's in me.  I'll get to it.  Maybe later tonight once the party in the bingo trailer down the hill closes down for the night.

No comments:

Post a Comment