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Flunk YOU.

My MIL Ru waiting for her.. FLIGHTDear Diary,

Ready? Get your number two pencils out because.. it’s pop quiz time. What’s the number ONE rule that you must always adhere to when speaking with family members dabbling in dementia? No. BESIDES the mentioning e-v-e-r.. of these VERBOTTEN words “new single (old) man just moved in” in the very same sentence as “my condolences that your best friend Blanche snagged him when you went to wipe creamed corn off your pant leg”. Although I would consider this a correct answer.. it’s NOT the one I’m ACTUALLY looking for.

What I want to hear you shout out is.. NEVER tell YOUR senior, who.. for all intensive purposes we’ll name Ru (my MIL). Don’t tell her or any of her hangers on, in ADVANCE (meaning anything over the five minute mark), that really SOON she (they) will be attending an event that will be such a thrill and so unbelievably amazing and yes.. even mind blowing (which just so you know— is an expression one should stay away from altogether in this instance) that she’ll be freaking O.U.T when she discovers what it is.

Then once you get Ru and the whole dementia floor jazzed up about the impending outing.. it immediately becomes, “O.K. ladies, gentlemen AND new (old) guy hooking up with Blanche—I know it will be difficult, but I want you to FORGET we ever told you guys this little plan of ours. Because the bus ride that we’ve been promoting all morning LONG.. is actually.. not for another THREE hours. AND.. now don’t take this personally, but it gets positively annoying when you folks ask us staff every six seconds the big looming question—WHEN DID YOU SAY THE BUS RIDE ISSSSSSSSS? So being now that we’re really sorry to have blabbed, we’d like to ask for your cooperation in leaving us alone and quit that confounded hanging around the faux bookcase keypad locked door.. (in case any of you have the bright idea to escape early) and find something to amuse yourselves with while you wait for.. ETERNITY. With your coats already on, set to go. Absolutely NOWHERE. Sound like a plan? Meh.

Not more then three seconds after I swing the door leading to the ROAM (dementia floor) open and maybe two seconds after nearly smacking that sucker in the face of Helen. Who, in case you care.. is known far and wide for her propensity to seek freedom through any means possible. Including thrusting her entire BODY through an inch wide crack under my armpit, while trying in vain to escape using her super powers set to STEALTH mode.

As I delicately grab Helen by the shoulder pad and turn her around in the opposite direction.. who THEN do I come face to face with? But only a mob of irate “customers” lead by none other then Ru and her gal pal Mildred.

“You know how long we’ve been waiting for our flight? Do you? Huh? Huh?”

RU: I do.

MILDRED: Good for you. How long?

RU: At least a few days.

MILDRED: A few DAYS. And in that time.. has anyone come out and offered us an upgrade? Maybe a room for the night? No sir.. they HAVE NOT.

“Ummmm.. Mildred” comes my fake soothing voice. I’d be glad to COMP you with a few of these (digs hands into Ru’s coat pockets) decadent green foil mint pattie candies. Think of it as a gift for your patience (sticks finger down throat and makes gagging sounds) and understanding (more gagging).. because you TRULY are one of our valued customers here and we want you to be happy.

“What about ME? You want me to be happy, too?”

Nice.

“Yes Helen. Mildred, will you give some of her compensation package.”

“I most certainly will NOT.”

Ughhhh. Talk about anxiety. My biggest outside voice WELL DONE, to Happy Daze Assisted Living for making SUCH a brouhaha over something like a bus ride down the I-5 corridor and then having the gall to announce it as early as second breakfast time. Which truth be told, is not as bad as.. say, announcing it at FIRST breakfast time at the 3:00 am hour. Still, nobody likes to sit around an airport for hours.. unmedicated. Now do they? And I totally GET Mildred’s agitation and her desire to check her WATCH after each exhalation and bellow.. ARE WE BOARDING YET? GAWD ALL MIGHTY.. I have to get back to work, fools.

But people.. after a half an hour of this (and the remainder of Ru’s mints plus one of my old MAC lipsticks and an old ratty Pokemon card of the kids) I couldn’t take it anymore. I took Mildred’s hands all semi-comfortingly; being sure not to touch the palm area that had chocolate melted all over. And said in my most wizened voice,

“Mildred dear— try to relax and BE in the moment.”

To which she sweetly responded, “Which moment should I BE in? And how the HALLE do you expect me to GET there.. when the FLIGHT is delayed?”

Full bar service for the duration of this journey.

-A

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Posted in Uncategorized 7 years, 8 months ago at 10:29 pm.

1 comment

One Reply

  1. widdlydids Apr 12th 2010

    I got in trouble 2day for using a alternate word the real one. I just find it more tasteful. But I will say this. You make me laugh. I have some many up my sleeve this week. I have no idea which one to think about as I go about my day of sweeping up the crumbs, preparing endless amounts of food for my growing boys. Washing all their clothes, tidying their rooms. So I shall think of them all.
    But i know this 4 a fact, my next lot of canvas’s I roll out of my studio are going to be of wonder and delight.
    Ky Annie xx