With all the unfettered chuntering of previously contribution there was a question and direction I think – though I’m not sure I know what it was. Perhaps if I do come back to read this some future day, a capsule from the past like the video watched this evening perhaps …
Yesterday I went to see my grandmother I was not alone and never am on such visits. She had dimensia of some sort and it’s taken it’s hold of her over the last ten or more years .. This is I’m led to understand a long slow burning example of such a condition .. i know not having never looked into it.
Going up there to the home / hospital my grandfather had told me of a man who spends his days in the smoking room, he sits and plays around with 5 or so lacks of cigarets & presumably smokes .. He told me about him and that he was up until only a few years ago a pilot for Swiss on their transatlantic route. I heard this but thought little of it other than it was quite a change to befall a person non shorter time. On arrival sure enough there was a man sat in the smoking room cigarette boxes lines up on the table before him.
At first when I would go up there and for many years I was fortunate, mostly I seemed to get good days, she knew who i was and while far from conversationally adept, she would sort of smile, say the odd thing and be happy to see people. She was sad to be up there and so leaving was always uncomfortable but within limits. More so when she was brought home and seemed to know when other things were lost to her that time was finite and she would be going again.. Now physical accidents, brittle bones, stronger drugs and the disease itself have changed things, she is either in bed or placed into a chair, barely speaks and seems uncertain where who and what things are about.. But not entirely, occasional flickers still splutter up from somewhere, I’m more the audience member, there with whomever else has gone, little call for exiting my observation posting and somehow it’s barely the person who used to be in any real way. I rather hope it isn’t – these places are awful, this is switzerland, the building are nice, well kept, the rooms highly sanitary and the ward well staffed but it’s not life, it’s a prison, a tedious, odd smelling prison without any security, it doesn’t need it, they’re all prisoners of their own incapacities, unable by and large to escape, or too confused to make good on it, even if their initial faculties & person rendered an attempt possible, if ill advised.
It’s a none life – before she could walk and there were days when some more of the person would break free from their prison and appear on a look, a jesture and to decreasing extents in words – no more .. Though among the confusion and none sentence offering came this to the apparently rhetorical question – do you remember any English … Bisschen – thought to be a random response at first along with the other incoherent words lumped together in strings of no meaning (which is a good day I’m led to believe) – can you say something in English? She’s asked
there is a pause and things seem to move on
– yes – the English yes not the German .. She smiles at us, presumably a response to our surprised smiles .. That was unexpected. It begs a familiar question, how much of the person that used to be, is now trapped in there? Hopefully, I think again – not too much
Many years ago, also over Christmas I was invited round to a good friends – during that visit, they forgot something and having a car while they did not I headed to collect it. Bringing it to the home / hospital where their grandmother was staying. I remember it reasonably well, she seemed quite a strong willed old lady though small and frail and in the end she was taken back to her room. It’s was obscure & uncertain for me, I didn’t know quite what I was doing there or what I ought to do, so steered into the gap between polite as possible and distantly observant. I was stood toward the back of the room by this point removing myself so much as was possible from events while those who were left were clearly emotional about things. It was uncomfortable, not that this was of any consequence and I know not now a this time later if such a reaction was poor, ok, correct or what or how it would be done better.. Was not that useful in such matters.
Perhaps this instance, though it sticks in my mind is not really noteworthy but it highlights that what was true then is basically true now… Just as it had been true before.
Before that then – my orger grandfather was in hospital. Having travelled to Glasgow, on the second of third day I remember not, he awoke. The room had many people in it, my father his brother and others .. He was. Straight talking often offensive more often funny man who’d struggled with the death of his wife. He was possibly not as he hoped himself to be or as he hoped to be seen and such things were too much for him. He woke and drew me close, I don’t remember how or why only that he asked that we go or that I go. I took no offence, said ok and did as I was asked. I was there, I had generally abstractly perhaps though i would be saying goodbye, so it proved to be, I see now as I seemed to then in nothing wrong in simply obliging his request. One size though seldom to never fits all.
I returned to Glasgow not long after for his funeral – I don’t remember much of it – I remember my grans for the unusually raw state in which this usually proud and gruffish man now barley stood. I observed, distant and a row or so back.
This had been a quick year – there is upon us all a requirement to exist in the moments afforded to us to the most that the opportunities afforded us allow. This evening an old video ran from summer holidays in the mountains & one in Cornwall and there was the past, familiar faces not so very different for many of us but not for all.
We are bound to ourselves and the way we are – New Years are nothing more than another day of sand falling gradually.. But occasionally it does to reflect, am I paying enough heed to today in my predilection to concern myself with what could be tomorrow, was I enough there when spending all that time filing 20 odd yeas ago, those days when I couldn’t realise how unusual and fortunate much of my life was – am I doing the same now writing these notes to myself about future and past matters rather than appreciating what remains in this today …
New Years – compounded by uncertainties in careers or life – doesn’t do wonders for inherent introspection .. Observing too much? Not taking sufficient care of the day in doing jobs that take up so much life but that relate in only minimal ways to anything that I could conscrue as either interesting or good use of what time we have. The most fun is in the interesting, in the new and in the striving to be that better person making better decisions – nothing that is worthwhile is easy apparently but despite what initial discomforting shock it might bring a visit by three most well informed and directionally certain ghosts being heralded might not have gone amiss ..carrot by the fireplace to encourage forth a visits from the undead dead or whatever ghosts are .. The unquiet dead .. The informed & opinionated dead
Questions … & 2015 .. Antworten