Pretty much the same, just different

My dad is sometimes sly now. Middle sister coerced my mother into taking my dad for an evaluation. Apparently my father became irritated at the tester asking him a bunch of questions he couldn’t answer, so when she stepped out for a moment, Dad slipped out of the room and hid.*

It took them half an hour and a Code Yellow to locate him, because he’d stand behind a half-open door, and when he saw them check one room and move on, he’d slip into the checked room. “See how they like not knowing the answers!” he told me later, gleefully.

The last Christmas

We spent Christmas Eve at my parents’ house. Both my sisters, their spouses, and all children. 100% attendance by the DePlume family.

It’s the first holiday in memory my mother has commanded our presence rather than request it. “This will probably be the last Christmas,” she added, trailing off. Last Christmas before what? I did not ask. At least not to her face.

Who are you?

When I saw my parents on the way to a wedding last month, I tried to get my mom to consider respite care for my dad as his dementia progresses.

“I’ve been looking,” she confessed. “But I can’t find a male nurse. There’s plenty of females in the business, but I haven’t found a guy yet.”

“Why do you need a guy?” I asked.

Purveyor of irritating goods and other minor doom

Am fast discovering the impossible — after fantasizing from the time my oldest was about six months old (ten years ago) of that day, THAT GLORIOUS DAY, when my youngest child would go off to kindergarten, I would loose the tender shackles of full time motherhood, and be restored to the free-time-having creature I once was — I am finding myself somehow still up to the nostrils in full time parenting.

Hello my peeps of the ghosttown formerly known as LJ!

Last week I gave up the ghost and went to therapy.

I know talking it out, taking care of oneself, healthy to ask for help, all that. But last week, I was a middle aged woman, ugly-crying in a stranger’s office at 9:00 in the am.

On the balance, I can’t decide if it’s more depressing that I have become New Yorker Magazine style cartoon caricature. I hate therapy. It skins away all those protective coping mechanisms, leaving me feeling both naked, and like an onion – as though every whiff of myself waters my eyes. It’s no way to be.*

In other news, we moved. It’s been five years, so that last house was the longest I’ve lived under one roof since I was six years old. Milestone!

Lots of triggers re: pregnancy scares, dementia

A few weeks ago, I went up take care of my nephew while Middle had her second baby. I haven’t blogged much about it, because it was one of those pregnancies where somebody says early on, “If the baby makes it, there’s a 30% chance of normalcy.”

They say it in such a grave tone, a person like me stupidly says, “What do you mean, normalcy?”

“Not blind. No severe CP. No major malformations.”

Well, look what the cat dragged in

Last time we spoke, I was in a bad place. I could feel myself getting crushed under this psychic weight, like swimming deep underwater — unpleasant unrelenting pressure prevented me from breathing easy. I began to notice shadows out of the corner of my eye, as if something dark were sneaking up on me. It made me feel unglued to reality, a little unhinged. On a global level, and in terms of functioning correctly in my daily life, I knew I was OK and safe. But still, these changes made me nervous.