All posts tagged: old

She’s slipping through my fingers, and there’s nothing I can do

I’ve written before about Mum, who’s 81 and lives in the UK, most recently HERE- ‘Mother and daughter out for a walk’ , and a longer one last year about the health situation HERE- ‘Down the long lane’. This morning I opened the late-night email I’ve been half dreading for at least 18 months: “I need to let you know that your mum is not too well… her dementia has deteriorated.  She had not been eating well and not been taking her medication for the dementia and is in a very confused state…” F*ck! There’s no other response. I feel sick. And kinda helpless. I’m in Australia, with a son who’s just started his final year of school, a home to run which includes a cat, a self-employed performing business to take care of, and Pilates clients to teach every week as well. Plus my interstate beloved ‘H’ to connect with regularly. I look at my diary, flicking pages back and forth. Can I cancel everything to jump on a plane? Is that the best idea? For …

Mother and daughter out for a walk

A hand strokes her back as they walk down the hill on this warm morning, heading away from me. Giving reassurance, or seeking it? The road is steep, and the frailer figure is definitely an old woman. Her back is stroked again, and I assume that’s her daughter, with the cherry red sunhat and white runners. Similar body shapes, similar height. I’m walking into a mall in England with Mum, July 2017, and we realize the shop she wants is up on the second floor. I know her anxiety and claustrophobia won’t let her get in a lift, and she hates escalators too. “Shall we walk up the stairs Mum? It’s not far. I can hold your arm, or you can hold the railing?” “Ooh, I don’t know, I hate heights. Will you help me?” “Yes of course. Just don’t look down. Let’s talk about something to keep your mind off the height, and definitely don’t look down OK?”  The red hat leans in to whisper something, and the older woman laughs; I hear it …