Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Mom Strikes Again

My Mom called me on Saturday to ask if she could spend the night. She said that my sister TIB, with whom she lives, was having a "big party" Saturday night, with lots and lots of people, and they were all staying overnight, so there would be no room for Mom. Oh, and the cat had to come along, too, because there wouldn't be room for the cat, either.

I knew what was going on. Mom has Alzheimer's Disease. Mom had had a dream the night before about a big party, about having to find a place to spend the night, about having to take the cat along, and when she woke up, she thought it was real.

I talked to TIB. TIB said Mom had told her a different version of the same story, that TIB's daughter was having a party at TIB's house, that she needed to find a place to stay, that she would have to take the cat, etc.

The first few times this happened, it was alternately scary/confusing/sad. Now it just irritates the hell out of me. "No, Mom, nobody is going to take the cottage away from you." "No, Mom, TIB didn't tell you that you had to give away the cat". "No, Mom, the dentist didn't tell you that she had to pull all your teeth." Oh yeah, the dentist - I have to take Mom to the dentist and go in and speak with the dentist after she sees Mom, because otherwise, Mom will walk out of that treatment room telling the most amazing stories you've ever heard.

And five minutes after you've reassured Mom about whatever she is obsessing over, she starts right in all over again. And then gets mad because you are telling her the opposite of whatever she has convinced herself is true.

Alzheimer's Disease is a snot.

1 comment:

bridgett said...

My mom is not yet burdened with Alzheimer's, but she does have a profound case of Age-Induced Certainty. Once she gets a idea in her head, no matter if there's a ton of evidence to the contrary, she cannot be persuaded to deviate from her original contention. Damnit, she's earned the right to speak her mind and to have an opinion...even if it's completely, utterly, demonstrably wrong. And then she'll repeat it until she's convinced herself that she heard this from some authoritative source and so it must be true.

My turn is coming, I know, and I know she's had 75 years of people telling her that her opinion (as a girl, as a woman, as an old woman) isn't as valuable as everyone else's, so I try to be cool about it. But it is wearying.