Friday, 29 March 2013

Trudge, trudge..

Onwards Oyomesanning...

Somehow I will reach the end of this week, then there will be the weekend and then early next week my other partner-in-care will be home.

Just tired.
Tired of holding it all together.
Tired of winter.

Okaasan has been fine - her conversations this week have been a bit vague - the old stories but with difficulty finding the words to make the stories flow. I supplied the missing words and she was off again.
I worked 3 nights and got home late, throwing supermarket-bought dinners together and sitting with Okaasan to eat them. I did some of her laundry and cleaned up her lunches. She actually washed a few plates.
Now it is a relaxed Friday and tomorrow I am taking myself skiing in a rented car. Just need to go away and relax somewhere away from responsibility.

The new kotatsu is fine and she is happy with that. The cats are enjoying playing with the box wrapping cords. The house is awash with unfinished piles of things: laundry in different stages of cleaning, papers, unopened packages. I am passing thru my home this week and not doing much else.

Lost it a bit one evening with Okaasan and told her off for using a harsh tone with me.
A student had given me huge, expensive strawberries and I was about to put them in the fridge.
"No!!! Don't do that! It's bad for the body to eat cold fruit!!No!" Okaasan shrieked at me.
Of course I reacted to her tone: "Oy! Don't use that kind of voice with me! I am family, I am NOT your house maid!"
And we both averted our eyes and busied ourselves with other tasks in the kitchen.....letting the simmering anger seep away.
In a country where there are many news stories of family members murdering the elderly in family fights, this was thankfully a small flare up. I meekly left the strawberries on the kitchen counter and made my escape upstairs.

I guess it IS the dementia, the lack of control over a emotion? A far too strong reaction to something? A casual: "Oh, it's better to leave them out of the fridge, they taste better etc" would have been enough. Not the shrieked orders.

Anyway. Almost the weekend.
It's been a really loooong week. Sometimes I feel every single year of my 52 years. This week was one of those times.
I need skiiing, and snow melting in my street, and a relaxed weekend.
And Dear Son to come home.

* Can't get into a topic about Dear Son's sibling (because I think there is a friend of the family reading this blog)...but just let me say....MAJOR USELESSNESS....we're not telling Okaasan, and I can't get into that person's private business here (just write publically about his mother's toilet accidents!!!!!;-))...but...oh wow.....some people really, really fail to make a success of their lives, despite being given all the tools of success. Okaasan is so lucky that the smart offspring and his super-smart girlfriend are caring for her.


  1. Oh, please, please tell us about the useless brother! I really enjoy your blog and certainly admire your dedication to helping dear son. Enjoy your skiing!

  2. I wish I could....but unless I find a way to password protect things I'd better not cos I am sure that someone who knows the family and who can read English is lurker...I can see from the visitors' location log - but enough to say...very very useless.

  3. Hi, Allyson here, also a Brit, but grew up in Aus. I decided to stay on in Japan after my husband and I came back for a year with his work. I had a feeling one of his parents would go soon and I didn't like the idea of them being uncared for (same useless siblings on the scene!!!)That and I didn't want my two boys, 7 and 10, to continue their life and education in US. Seems I was sadly correct. Ojiichan suddenly passes away 5 months ago. Obaachan was diagnosed with Level 2 dementia and unable to live alone. So, I asked that she move in with us.
    Would love to connect with you to share thoughts and ideas. Our dearest has somewhat a more progressed state. It's been a huge roller coaster ride for us and her, poor thing. I can't tell you how much I've learnt in the last 4 months!! AND I know there's more to come. The only consistant thing about our lives right now is, it's not consistant.

  4. Allyson - HI! Welcome...glad you found me...and I took a look at your blog...oh wow...YOU are really doing it, aren't you! Caring for his mum, and your own children...and Hub is away??? Gosh. Not sure what Dementia level Okaasan is at - we only had the initial mental health doc interview and didn't do any more than that - she hates doctors - she said "mid level" dementia - Okaasan drifts along okay in the routine of life we have crafted for her and only when there is a stressful situation do we get a peek into the abyss of her mental and emotional state....NIce to "meet" you....will be reading and sharing with you :-)