As much fun as my visit with my mother was on Tuesday was as bad as it was when I went to see her yesterday. Thursday is the day Jeri wants to call her, and I've promised to be there by 3:30 on Thursday afternoons so make sure my mother is in her room and answering her telephone.
I got there at 3 and she was standing by the common room looking lost and when she saw me she muttered under her breath that she was so disgusted she could hardly speak. I suggested we go to her room.
When we got to her room the door was locked and I told her to sit on the bench outside the door while I went to get someone to unlock it. When I came back with an aide, she was walking down the hall and trying to get into someone else's room.
I brought her back to her room and she looked, as she usually does, confused and unsure where she was.
When we sat in our respective chairs, I asked what the problem was.
It turns out she's disgusted and so sick she wants to throw up. She's disgusted with how badly "the business" is being run. How nothing is being done and how "the boss" (a man) doesn't care.
She hates her room. I pointed out that she had people to take care of her and she got extremely indignant. Nobody helps her. NOBODY had been to see her since she moved in. And if she tries to talk to someone, they just turn their backs and walk away. Or they laugh at her.
At one point she said that she was just going to leave and go find another place to live. I asked her how she was gong to do that and she said she'd just go out and find a place. I asked her where she was going to look and she said "in those places where you look." (thank God she is in a locked facility and I don't have to worry about her trying to leave)
I texted a note to Jeri that she was bad and that when she called she should be cheery.
In mid-tirade, my mother was so disgusted she said she couldn't stay there any longer and got up and stormed out of the room. I brought her back and tried to talk to her a bit longer, hoping Jeri would call, but she did. not. want. to. be. there and stormed out again. (I texted Jeri not to call.)
I followed her down the hall and saw that Jennifer, who is in charge of the memory care unit was in the hall and asked if we could have a meeting, thinking it would placate my mother to talk with "the boss."
We went into Jen's office and my mother was so furious she was unable to find words. When I pointed out that Jen was the boss there, she spat out "and who is YOUR boss?" (because obviously a woman couldn't be the boss) When we tried to get her to say one thing that was upsetting her, she tried to say that she didn't even have a desk, but couldn't find the word for "desk." Jen asked if she would give her two days to try to make things better for her and suddenly she bent over, grabbed her stomach, and said she had to leave or she was going to "urp."
We returned to the room and I spent the next hour or so trying to calm her down, but she was shaking, she was so livid. Somehow it became all my fault for not fixing things. But she couldn't tell me what needed to be fixed.
She finally said she was just going to go to Washington and start her own company, but she couldn't say what kind of a business it was going to be or how she was going to get there. Maybe she'd go to New York instead.
Every time she told me it was my fault for not fixing the business, I told her I didn't work for the business and that I worked for myself. "Well, who do YOU answer to?" she asked, belligerently. I told her I only had to answer to myself, but that never registered and she was still convinced that I worked for "the business."
When I finally told her I thought I should leave, she told me not to come back because if she saw me on her porch she would not answer the door.
I finally got up and delivered a message from her good friend Jeff, whom she knew from Hospice. Jeff is dying of cancer and so she has not seen him, but I had just received a note asking me to give her a kiss on the forehead for him and tell her he loves her. So even though she was so angry with me for not fixing "the business," I kissed her from Jeff and told her that he loves her. She said she didn't remember him.
I finally got up and told her I was leaving and she said that she had decided she would just disappear for a month, so not to come back.
The thing I hate most about this damn disease is that you never know who you are going to find when you arrive. Will it be the good natured woman who loved life and loved where she lives, as was the woman I met on Tuesday, or the harridan who thinks everyone is incompetent and that she must leave and start her own company?
Lord help me, I don't know who I am going to find when I go to see her tomorrow. I think I'll bring candy....