"Let's NOT have a bath!"
Which part of that didn't you understand?
You know that old joke?
Conversations with Okaasan run along these lines - she gets the topic, but not the detail.
After we stood in the kitchen talking about bath - should I have one, no I had one yesterday, so maybe I don't need one, should I have one before the hair salon?, maybe no, it would take too much time, no bath is ok - I came upstairs to switch off the computer and returned a minute later to the kitchen to start prepping lunch.
Okaasan was in her underwear in the kitchen, fussing around with a towel and running a bath for herself!
No point in stopping her once she'd started in on the activity, so off she went to have a bath and I moved the lunch plans back an hour.
Dementia really screws up the understanding of conversations: the topic stays in the memory, but the details of it fly away as soon as they are heard. A decision isn't a decision 1 minute later. A need or a like - it has gone, or changed.
So, bath, lunch, get dressed, get ready to go 30 minutes early - and off we went together across the snowy local roads to the subway. Ride the train companionably into town. Guide her to the hair salon.
Do I have my subway pass? I usually get on the train here, I use this exit usually, where are we going, have I been here before, why are we here, did I come here before?....all the usual worries, the checking questions, the anxietes.
Delivered her on time to the hair salon and came home to relax.
Yujiro picked her up in the car on his way home, well almost didn't because he hadn't read my mails to his cellphone after work, but by 7 pm Okaasan was back home ok with a stylish perm and looking tired but happy.
All ok for another month or two.