Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Sliding into paranoia?

Her. Not me. Although maybe I'm not so far behind....

Last night I had Couch Surfing guests (a Korean mother and daughter with the biggest suitcases in the world), so I was out making them welcome and got home about 9 pm.

I'd met Okaasan at 4 pm when I first got home and she was just heading out for a walk. Grabbed some laundry from her room, found the lunch delivery soup pot that she'd lost (it was in the microwave) and managed to do a bit of cleaning.
I cooked her fave flat fish in soy sauce and tofu soup, left it all out in the kitchen for her. Veggies, rice etc.

Got home at 9 pm and found none of it eaten. Okaasan asleep in her room.

???????? Had she come home and sat down by the TV while the soup was heating, and fallen asleep? Had she eaten while out? Was she sick?

Just now I went in to her room to check.

"Morning Okaasan? How are you? You didn't eat dinner last night, so are you ok?"
"I didn't eat dinner? Me?"
"Yes, when I came home at 9 pm from work (little white lie), the fish and the soup etc was still here in the kitchen. Are you feeling ok?"
"The suspicious person was outside, so I switched off all the lights."
"?????But the lights were on....about dinner...."
"There's that sign outside about Don't Ring the Doorbell. Why is that there?"
"Because last week you said someone rang the doorbell at 10 pm."
"Last night a man was in the street, I could see him. It gave me a bad feeling. I switched out the lights.".
"Well, it's ok....don't worry. We have a big strong front door. As long as you are ok, I was worried about you not eating dinner."
"Dinner? I didn't eat dinner?"

....and at that point at escaped!!!!!!!

Is her paranoia increasing and taking root?
Is this because Yujiro is away and she has an underlying feeling of anxiousness?
Or is there actually someone hanging around because the car is gone from outside the house 2 weeks, and lights are on all night in the house?
Or is the moon made of cheese?

Point 1: I must remember to take DOWN the door sign daytime and hide it, so that it doesn't trigger the whole story again. Maybe it is just reinforcing her paranoia. I should put it up just before I go to bed, when she is safely asleep by the TV.
Point 2: It will be very interesting to see if this story continues once Yujiro and the car are back next week. I'm betting it won't.

Mind you - we won't know if that's because the suspicious man has noticed the car and moved on to scare other old ladies, or if Okaasan is feeling safe again and her paranoia has subsided.

I think I need to go and have nice normal conversations with my English class students :-)


  1. Read this entire blog and I've really enjoyed it - thank you for sharing! You're bookmarked now :).

  2. !!!!!!! wow! Thankyou! I'M not sure anyone has done that...I look back at stuff sometimes to see when things happened and to remind myself that things Can Get Better - but reading through it all is a task. :)
    There have been suggestions of squashing it all together in some mammoth, head-ache installing editing job for publication - but for obvious reasons that won't be until Okaasan has passed on to the great kotatsu-in-the-sky (where I hope the angels cook better than I do!).

  3. When I realized the topic - dementia - I wanted to see the long view, so I backed up and re-read it all. I broke it down over a few weeks though! :). I've seen dementia before, my grandmother died at 93 from cancer and was in advanced dementia by then. She was an artist most of her life and my mother found many of her SS and dividend checks, uncashed, worked into her late-stage collages (!). It's a long process and I'm fascinated by how you and your boyfriend are managing it; the role of carer may be in my future as well so I'm learning.

    Again, thanks for sharing, I'll be reading!