“We can go pulka riding again!”

At 5:30 this morning I woke up from a nightmare. T. left at 6:00 and at 6:30 a warm “Sparky” snuggled down with me in bed and put cold feet on me while I hear “Boo” happily exclaiming from the sitting room “We can go pulka riding again”! Let’s say I jumped out of bed and looked out the window because surely it could not be true? We had spring yesterday! But he was right. The snow covered the ground and it is still coming down. Slosh on the parking lot though and when that freezes: HELP! I spent 15 minutes trying to find ski mittens for “Kitty” and found 5 right gloves but not a single one for his left hand so he had to go off with thin knitted gloves. The kind that grows with your hand and that are not made for snow, slosh and the like. My nightmare of morning was still not over. “Boo” put on his boots in the sitting room and dropped a whole pile of dried mud on the floor. As I plugged in the vacuum cleaner, there was NO reaction. I desperately tried different outlets but it is stone dead! So there goes at least another 200 dollars/100 pounds/1000 kronor that we don’t have. We have a crack over the entire ceramic top of the stove, so one must not boil water over the pot edge, or there will be a power cut. The eggs freeze inside their shells in the fridge, so something is up with that one too. The freezer is also dying. And as I mentioned yesterday, our camera’s flash no longer work after only 5 years. They told me it will cost a new camera to repair it, so what’s the point. I don’t feel happy right now.

And the trustee’s words still ring in my ears. My sister read my blog yesterday and rang me up to talk. We were on the phone for over an hour. She brought up how much my mum drank when she visited them a year ago and how one time when she had phoned her here in Sweden, my mum told Monica that she had fallen asleep in her clothes on the sofa. That she had had guests and the counter was full of empty wine glasses, all the windows were open and the back door stood open as well. I got scared. What if she has taken to the bottle? She lived with an alcoholic man for three years, traded him for another man with alcohol problems, and she was appalled by their drinking. But T. said last night, that what happened then, has not necessarily stopped her from taking to the bottle herself, NOW. The trustee does not think that she goes out to anything anymore. No painting classes, no English classes, senior activities, nothing. That would fit a drug abuser’s behaviour. Sitting at home, feeling depressed and sorry for herself, blaming others like me, for her being alone, when she could have been surrounded by family for the last ten years or soon 12 actually… It is possible, I guess, that she has started drinking?! That could have caused loss of memory and other health problems, falling over and so forth. Women are also good at hiding their drinking. Closet drinkers. I am sitting here wondering if I should ask the trustee? Not that it changes anything. If she is drinking, then I can’t stop her from this distance, nor can people that are around her. If I learned one thing with an alcoholic in the house, it was that they can not be forced to do anything. It has to come from inside. The person itself must want to quit. And the person will not want to do that until they have hit rock bottom. An elderly person that is loosing all memory is not going to think that it’s worth it. I feel positively ill. Since these thoughts started circulating in my mind yesterday, I have felt nauseous. And I sat crying on the way to Lund to fetch “Kitty” from school but had to force myself to quit since teachers would have wondered at me showing up all puffy in my face and with red eyes. It’s enough that I look that way after phone calls from head master and e-mails from “Kitty’s” teacher. What can I do about my mum? Yesterday I was looking for signs in myself of alzheimer’s. And when we arrived home from Lund, I started thinking that I hope I never get like her. Better die quickly in a car crash or something, like my father-in-law. He was spared getting old and having problems. 70 years old and healthy, is the way he went.

Last night I watched a TV program called “the singing stair well”. A British concept. Getting a choir leader to go out in the most unlikely places and find people to form a choir. They get 13 weeks to learn to sing and then there is a big event where they get to show themselves off. In Britain, they had one choir of teenagers, go compete in China. Another group got to perform in the Royal Albert Hall, I think. Anyway, last night was the first time I saw the Swedish version and it was the last episode. I was meant to have gone to bed but there was a young woman that sang, that had been on anti-depressants for 5 months because her 2 month old son had died in SIDS. They filmed her going to the little grave, behind the sky scrapers in Malmö. They did a close up of her face and I could feel her pain. I stand and look at Serena Rose’s grave the same way wondering WHY? But the choir was helping her. I had to hear the piece they had learned and they showed that most people in this Malmö ghetto choir, them coming from the worse part of Malmö, were elderly. One man was 83 and it just made me sigh. WHY do some people keep their dignity, their mind, their memories, and some don’t? Disease is unfair. But this thing of becoming like a child… It’s not even becoming like a child, as I said to my sister, because a child you can talk to, a child you can instruct, a child learns little by little to control itself and build up barriers for what is tolerated to say and do to people around one. But an elderly person is going the other way. They do not develop but tear down everything they have learned during a life time. They will more and more, say whatever and do whatever. Forbidden things. Taboo things. When my mum screamed at the trustee on Sunday, she did just that. Behaved in a manner she never would have displayed years ago. Now the question is, was it drink induced???

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