Conversations in our house are quite interesting these days. Dad is hard of hearing. Mom’s ability to process words, both hearing and speaking, is declining. Some days no matter how many context clues we have, we just can’t make sense of the conversation. We do the best we can, but sometimes we fail miserably and with comedic results. The daily effort of real time translation is exhausting, but we keep encouraging verbal exchanges to keep her engaged.
I’ve tried to record some of the conversations…….
After a 30 minute bizarre conversation about getting mom’s haircut, we had this final exchange. It was pretty funny and I was trying so hard not to laugh..and remember, these are the coherent versions. Real life was far less linear.
Mom: the lady across the street..
Mom: the cookie lady
Mom: where does she get her hair cut? It looks inexpensive..
Me: you want me to ask her where she gets her cheap haircut???
ME: I made you mint brownies
Dad: MIND brownies?
Me: Mint ( trying to annunciation clearly)
Dad: (look of incomprehension)
Me: Pe-pper- mint
Dad: you don’t have to tell me three times!
Dad: AN-GEL-A….. Your mother is having butt problems again…..
Mom: My poop is stuck again. Can you look for it?
Dad to Dr: It’s going to be our 61st anniversary
Dr: Wow! How many children do you have?
Dad: My wife had 4 births. We lost the first one at term. Then we couldn’t afford Kotex so we kept having babies.
Mom: I feel like there are people here
Me: ummm… where?
Mom: (Gestures around the table where the three of us are sitting…)
Me: You see Dad and I? Anyone else?
Mom: Yes. People. You know.. cats.
Mom: I think I want to use a wipe for (gestures to face)
Me: Hands her a wipe
Mom: What’s this for?
Me: See you after dinner!
Dad: After lunch?
Me: no, after dinner.
Dad: this afternoon, lunch.
Me: No, after dinner.
Mom: Can you find those things?
Me: What things?
Mom: Those things like this…(makes a round shape with her thumb and forefinger)
Me: Ummm… buttons?
Mom: No, those things to eat?
Me: Clues are 1. round and 2. edible… um…blueberries?
Mom: No. You know, I have had them before.
Me: (running through my mind all round food that mom has had before)…
Mom: You know, like BEFORE..
Me: Ummm… CHEERIOS?
Mom: YES. Can you find some?
Dad: Jackie comes at 8 tomorrow
Me: no, she comes at 5
Dad: she comes at 9?
Me: NO. AT. FIVE. PM (speaking slowly, clearly, and loudly, as he has previously requested)
Dad: it’s a valid question. You don’t have to get snippy
Dad: this game (Go Fish) gives lots opportunity to cheat
Bob: it’s a good thing we don’t cheat
Me in the corner: trying VERY hard not to laugh because Bob and I cheat all the time so she can win.
Mom, talking about her rash on her back.. it sounds like it is getting smaller.
Me, thinking .. is her rash talking to her now??
Mom: my eyes don’t remember very well…
Playing Go Fish..
Me: Do you have a Jellyfish?
Mom: a What?
Me: a jellyfish. A jolly jellyfish 😜
Me: J. E. L. L. Y.
Mom: Jolly? Fish?
Me: showing her the card.. one of these..
Mom: oh, he is so cute.
My mother rarely gets mad, raises her voice, or talks back, but when she does EVERYONE knows it….. and she is most coherent then as well.
Dad: are you done with that?
Dad: (in a louder, annoyed voice). I SAID…. Are you DONE with that?
Mom: ( in an equally louder and annoyed voice) I SAID…..MAYBE
Mom was sitting at the dining room table folding laundry. To do this, she has to have the table clear so that she can stack the folded items. We do laundry three or four times a week so that she has something to do. She take great pride in this job.
One morning she was folding laundry and had her stacks neatly placed on the table. Dad came downstairs, sat at the table, looked annoyed, and pushed her stacks out of his way. BAD MOVE. VERY BAD MOVE.
Mom: why did you do that? Why? That’s not right for you to do that. To our aide: Did you see him do that? Do you think that’s right? Aide: no m’am!
Dad got up and left the room
Mom: (to dads departing back) Richard. That was disrespectful.
Mom: (to aide). Richard makes me so mad. That was disrespectful. Do you think that was right?
Mom: That made me so mad!<<<<<<<