Monday, June 20, 2011

Family Update

Yesterday I called my dad to wish him a happy Father's Day.

My brother answered the phone, and we chatted for a few minutes. Surprisingly, he then handed the phone to my mum. She sounded really healthy, happy, and lucid. She asked how I was doing, what I was doing, and how OLK's acting career was going (awesome, she'll be playing Mrs.Crazy on a TV near you quite soon). Within a few minutes, her hearing started to slip. Another minute later and she started advising me that if I had anything important to say that I should tell my brother and he'd write it down for her. She repeated the suggestion 5 or 6 times within as many minutes. Then, thankfully, she put my dad on the line.
After a short conversation with him, my mum shouted that she urgently needed to talk to me. Back on the line, she told me to prepare for some bad news: "Your brother is dead. He passed away yesterday."

I could hear him in the background saying "I'm not dead - I'm right here!" Then she got confused, wondering who had died. I tried suggesting that perhaps she got my brother mixed up with Clarence Clemons, but my joke really didn't help. Then she laughed uncomfortably, and cackled "Sorry, your mother is going crazy."

I was glad to end that phone call.
I've read that one of the most painful aspects of Dementia is that the victim shows signs of lucidity and improvement. This gets your hopes up right before they come crashing down again. Still, at least I got a few minutes with her...


  1. Not happy to read about your mum's continued decline (although I must confess, I smiled at your brother saying "I'm not dead" - very Monty Python-esque), but thrilled to read about OLK's acting gig

  2. Dementia is the hardest thing to have to watch someone go through, I feel for you. Try to keep your sense of humour through it all, it will help ease you through it.

    And congrats to OLK! You'll be posting dates and times and stuff, right?