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  • Jane

Another Mad Manic Night


It’s after 1am and mum is high as a kite again. I’ve really lost it this time. I feel I’m heading towards being arrested for elder abuse. I am exhausted and my patience is fading. Mum keeps getting out of będ, collecting odd things from all over the house - Ajax spray, books, photo albums, a shoe, a watch - and stuffing them all into a huge bag and squashing it into the bottom shelf of her bookcase.

She is in the kitchen now. Once again I try and guide her back to her room, putting on my strict voice ‘Mum, it’s late and I’m tired. You need to go to bed’. She still resists, so i pull her along the corridor with all my might, with all my force. I reluctantly give her 3/4 of a tablet of Temazepam but it doesn’t work. An hour later I give her half a tablet more but she’s still jumping out of bed. I disappear to my room; I need to separate for a bit to contain myself. After a few minutes I return and see her grovelling on the floor, like a grounded whale. I try to pull her up but she’s too heavy. I stand and look down, watching her trying so hard to help herself. I feel sorry for her but also frustrated - all my warnings were useless - she fell anyway.

I try again but I can’t move her so I wake up Yasha to help me. He is groggy as his medication is already taking effect. Together we manage to lift her onto the bed like a sack of potatoes. ‘We’re having a lovely party!’ she chirps as Yasha hauls her up. Mum is oblivious of her state and how challenging it is.

I tuck her in, give her a quick kiss and put on that voice again: Stay in bed, you need to sleep, then leave the room. I wait in bed not sure what to do. I realise my words are wasted as I can hear she's up and pottering. When I walk back in she is sitting on a low chair concentrating intently on hiding her 'treasures' in the bottom of her bookshelf. ‘I’m just organising these things, I’m not disturbing you. So I leave, she looks safe enough.

It’s after 2am by now. My body hurts from an accumulation of lack of sleep. I hear a thud, jump up and see that she’s sprawled on the floor again, with a smile on her face. I try to manoeuvre her body, but her legs are tangled under the side table and it’s not easy to move her in the tiny space.

Maybe it’s better if she just stays on the floor, I wonder. This way it’s safe and she can’t move around. I grab a thin spare mattress, some blankets and other bedding, and set up a make-shift camp next to her bed. But she is determined to climb onto her bed. I don’t want to disturb Coby a second time because he would be in deep sleep by now. I give in on the camp bed and help mum, one strategic move after the next. She knows exactly what she’s doing, and with strong perseverance and determination, she succeeds with minimal help from me.

It’s nearly 3am and I am too tired now to function. I leave mum, lock my door and fall sound asleep.

It’s morning, and I don’t know how she slept but she’s still on her bed and seems calmer but still overly happy.

What a night we had! she says laughingly. I mention that I was tired and angry but she looks at me confused and has no recollection. Then she sleeps all day till 4pm.

Let’s hope tonight is a regular night.

What's inside mum's 'secret bag'


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