Monday, October 8


This lovely flower has been giving me delight, & surprise for the past week.
This pic is the truest as far as colour goes. It is a very soft pink, & not the bright colour that it appears in the other photo.

A very kind woman gave me 2 leaves from this plant some time ago, & I did my best to get them growing. I did manage to get them both started in pots.

The dogs broke one plant & it died. The second plant has struggled against insects, dogs, small children, & a blundering Garden Vandal.

So I hung the pot up on a hook. It has been looking so forlorn & sick, & ravaged by some insect eating it's leaves. Imagine my surprise when I found it had buds all over it's pathetic skeletal eaten leaves! I had been on the point of repotting it, hoping to prolong it's life. Now, I suppose I should wait until it has flowered. I hope I dont kill it!

We have had a busy day. We had Small Grandson here with us & he has been busy busy.

We have played at being turned into bugs, turning him into bugs, & turning a visitor into a frog as well as various other insects. SG has been all sorts of animals, insects & Super Heroes. We had to draw some of these Super Heroes. There were some very peculiar looking Super Heroes, I can tell you!! (Who can remember exactly what Spider Man, or Super Man looks like??)
I had bought him some large crayons so he can use them when he comes to play, & he had a great time with them. A whole bunch all held together makes a wonderful 'Magic Rainbow'! He drew some water, & Nan drew a boat to sail on the water. Then there had to be rooms, beds, a lounge, a kitchen. SG was seen to be fishing from the bow, a nice fat fish on his line.

His mother was not well when she came home. She had a blinding headache, with flashing lights, & nausea, similar to a migraine. So I called her work, to say she could not do her afternoon call. She lay down in a dark room. Which was ok, except Leo thought he should be with her, & he lay at the door whining quietly.
Once Daughter J felt well enough to drive, she went home. She does not look well. She is under considerable stress at present.
After DJ, SG & our visitor had gone, the house seemed to deflate. All seems so quiet once SG has gone, with his happy piping voice, & his busy little body dashing about. Old Gom & Meggie sink back into quietude. Honey & Leo curl up to snooze.

I have been recently called upon to sit with a lady who has multiple health problems. It is so sad, as her mind is as sharp as ever, & she has the most wonderful sense of humour.
She lives in a Nursing home. "Lives" is loosely correct. Her lovely husband, who is in his late 70s collects her every day, & has her at home with him for the day. She has to be on oxygen quite often, so can find it hard to talk sometimes. She gets very lonely in the Nursing Home. Her 3 companions in her room, have all 'gone to the pixies' in some way. One poor soul can speak, but just simply refuses to! No one is sure why. The other 2 are suffering dementia of differing stages, & my friend says one of them raves & rants all night. With not a word of sense spoken.
My friend recently had an infection, & because she has breathing difficulties as it is, she was finding it terribly hard to breath, & it caused her to cough all night. She said the Night Raver, screamed at her, "Shut that bloody coughing up.!! Shut your bloody mouth!!" & "Will you shut your bloody coughing!! Shut up!!"
So my friend said, between coughs, "If you are going to speak to me like that, could you say Please & Thankyou?"
She said to her surprise it shut the shouter up for some time! She was laughing as she was telling me her little story.
They recently lost a son, who died of cancer, & I think my friend never really recovered from his death, as she seemed to go rapidly downhill after he died, & they had also recently lost their eldest grandson, who died after a prolonged coma, from an accident when he was only 16 years old.
She told me her husband takes her every week to the grave of their son, & parks close to the grave site, & opens the car door for her, & they sit & talk to their son, as if he is still with them. She said she supposed people think they are mad, but it comforts them both.
It was such a pleasure to be able to sit & talk with her. How sad to be trapped in a home without company to talk to. I cannot imagine which would be worse- to lose your marbles, & know nothing, or know that you once knew lots, & now cannot remember your own name, or to be so crippled as to need nursing care, but have no one to talk to, to stimulate your mind.
Getting old is damn scary!
I had better play up, do silly things & damn well enjoy myself to the max before the chances are all gone!!

Joe Cocker, Hitchcock Railway- loud!!


Anonymous said...

Ah, Meggie , as our very dear 83 year old aunty told me ," This getting old is damned hard work, M***y " --- We're getting there ourselves pretty quickly also !
A lovely story from your old friend . She and her husband sound a truly loving couple .
Glad you enjoyed your day with SG. Hope J improves quickly .
A very pretty flower too .

Mary said...

You know what Meggie - even though I am way too old I wish I could be your granddaughter.

I think you sound like the perfect grandmother.

Leigh said...

Meggie, it is so kind of you to give some of your time to your friend. Working in aged care I see a lot of sad cases but kindness is always remembered. I am always touched at how such little things to us can mean so much to someone else.

Lee said...

Lovely story. And well done on getting the plant through to flowering.

Jellyhead said...

Meggie you are a darling to go sit with the lovely old lady.

I also feel very small when I hear all the imaginary games you play with SG - you have *way* more stamina than I do for all that. After 5 minutes of pretend play with my kids (eg playing shops, being turned into bugs etc), I get so fed up I invent some pressing chore to attend to! (I don't mind reading, board games, chatting, outings etc - it's just the role play stuff I detest!)

Loved your last post about you and GOM and your minor household wars - so funny, and great to hear that all couples go through this kind of stuff!

Alice said...

I'm sure you are making a huge difference in the lives of this lovely couple.

There are some very sad cases, aren't there, where people linger on for years, way past the time they want to go.

Thank you for your empathy, Meggie.

Ali Honey said...

I just bet you have that dear old lady laughing Meggie!

The top photo is exactly the right pink cause I have that one too..... it's delicate and lovely.

The big crayons sound lots of fun. I'd be drawing too.

Joyce said...

When our Australian grandson was that age DH had to draw backhoes for him. And we had to play sharks in the water. What we will do for little kids! I think dementia is harder on the family than the one who has it. I don't think they know enough any more to realize what they have lost.

Mrs. Goodneedle said...

I agree with Joyce, age-ravaging diseases of the mind are harder on the family. We had a discussion only recently with my 85 yr-old MIL re: increasing life expectancy vs. quality of life. She fears losing her mind, but living on and on, the most... I suppose we all do. Surrounding yourself with the vitality of SG has to be pure joy!

Pauline said...

How good of you to go talk with this woman. Don't you hope you can be as cheerful as she when it's your turn to be old and invalided? I go to the churchyard to talk to my parents all the time and never thought it strange. I can't imagine losing a child or grandchild...

Unknown said...

You go for it Meggie - play up and enjoy all life has to throw at you while you can :o)

Linda G. said...

Beautifll flower, Meggie!
I know just what you mean by that sense of quietude when the Grandkids leave. Something vital seems to go right out the door with them!
I think they go a long way toward keeping us young in both mind and body..
Bless you for your kindness toward your friend. It must mean the world to her..

Joni said...

Oh I love the Christmas cactus, too bad they always die on me :( Yours seems to be happy even if it is a skeleton. I tell you I think I would be quite comforted by your visits if I was elderly! I believe there are many folks in nursing homes of sound mind and body just waiting for someone to visit. Getting old is damm scary!

Jeanne said...

{{Sending a hug}}
I'm here every day, reading your wonderful insights. You give me so much to think about.

Jo said...

Meggie, you have indeed earned your angel wings. I don't understand people who are impatient with other people.

Gorgeous Christmas cactus!

I had to delete my blog, but I have started another one and you can find me again by clicking on this comment and it will take you there.


meggie said...

Hi All,
Thank you for your comments.
I think one of the things that touches me most about the couple, who share their days together, is the way they look at each other with complete love shining in their eyes. He is still a handsome man, & though she is bent & thin, & losing her hair, when he looks at her, he just adores her, it shines from his whole face. And she is so proud of him. They have other caring family, but occasionally, they cant fill in the gaps, so Gom or I are only too happy to be of help.

ancient one said...

You said, "I had better play up, do silly things & damn well enjoy myself to the max before the chances are all gone!!" Good thought there. I've been feeling the same way lately.

Your flower is pretty. I love the color. Now who would have thought about holding a bunch of crayons and making a rainbow? You or GS? I was always so careful to stay inside the lines and only one crayon at a time. LOL

I just love your posts!!

meggie said...

Hi Ann, It was SG's idea, & it made me smile, because my son did exactly the same thing, when he was little- but he tried it on the wallpaper in his bedroom!
And when I asked why he did it, he told me he wanted to see what would happen. (with the crayons, not with me!) I felt that was a very valid answer & he never got into trouble! I just suggested paper might be a better idea next time.

Aunty Evil said...

Does anything that anybody does in a cemetery seem strange to others?


I say let people grieve and recover their own way. If it means talking to a headstone or even lying on it, so be it.

My aunty had my sister video tape the headstone and she sat watching it at home for hours. Not my cup of tea, but it helped her through on rainy days when she couldn't get to the cemetery.

Mike said...

My mother is getting along in years and every time I see her it seems she has gone down just a bit further. It breaks my heart really, but I guess if we are lucky enough to live long enough, it's something we all have to go through.

Sheila said...

When my eldest grandson was 3 years old, I used to have him here for weekends. We played super heroes, with me cavorting around the house with a cape made of a tea towel, secured with clothes pegs. Happy days.
I share your feelings about aging, my dad, currently in hospital, usually lives at a nursing home, and has dementia. I saw him on Sunday and for the first time in 5 years he recognised me.
It made my weekend..!

Faith said...

Well everyone should party and boogie woogie right til the end... hippie or no hippie.
I love reading your posts... i hope i can still dye my hair dye material even when Im 90 sure would be "The Rock Of Ages!"

Tanya Brown said...

I'm feeling dimwitted; is your pink-flowered plant a Christmas Cactus?

SG sounds like a pleasure, a real spark plug.

I agree with you - getting old can be scary. Some people manage to live out their years with some peace and independence, while others - well ... I've seen a situation similar to the one you describe, where the person was sharp and alert, but not able to live independently because of health reasons. Having to room with those whose minds have deteriorated and/or are rude is an acute sort of hell.

I'm glad your friend's husband collects her each day, and I hope he can continue to do that as long as possible.

Stomper Girl said...

Good on you for sitting with that woman, sounds like she deserves a good friend.

Marja said...

You are a great grandma.
It is sad that live comes with so many crosses to bear. Have a nice day

Anonymous said...

Getting old IS DAMN SCAREY! You are right. It's an awful shame that your friend can't get a room with someone else who has their mind. It would make all the difference to her.
Aged care facilities need a good overhaul I reckon.
Lovely story as usual though.

Birdydownunder said...

the good thing about growing old is..... it beats the alternative :0 have a hapy day

meggie said...

Hi All, I think blogger is playing dirty tricks on me! I swear I posted a comment before, but it is not here!
The husband of the couple is still working, though he is affected by the Equine Flu, so currently cannot work. He is a lovely energetic, busy man.
In other comments - I love being a grandma- I figure they grow up too quickly, & all the love you can give them, will not go to waste!
Jenny, I cannot seem to leave you comments- do you need to recheck your comment enablement? I get told I need to "be a member"??

Thank you for all your comments!!