At the start of November, Gran took ill. Really ill.
My wife made phone calls to nursing staff and after no change in Grans condition, an ambulance. Much to the entertainment of the Little Fellas, it took four ambulance volunteers to get Gran sorted and out of the house safely in the cool of evening.
For two weeks Gran puzzled and perplexed Doctors and Specialists. I humour myself writing this because, having known Gran for some 16 years now, it’s almost like it’s become her calling in life. Phenomenal perplexations of the physical body.
It was a bit touch and go as to whether any of us would get away into the forest to take a break if Gran was not ‘well enough’ to go into the respite that we had organised for her. Still, the hospital were happy to release her and, more importantly, the respite team were happy to take her.
So after about 3 weeks of having a change of scenery, Gran came home yesterday looking a little better, but kind of worse for wear also. Returning home, to her own room and her own bed and chair and hearing the sounds of life around her, lifted her spirits.
While a magpie softly carols outside on the verandah, Gran dozes in her sofa chair, aspirating and snoring from time to time and making gentle sounds like a nautical creature returning to the surface to exhale and take in fresh air.
The magpie, meanwhile, carries on through a range of bird calls. It carols happily and intersperses the songs with short little sound bites of other bird calls.
Today we heard:
- Red Wattlebird
- White-tailed Black Cockatoo
- Purple-crowned Lorikeet
- Twenty-eight Parrot (unusual because we don’t see many of the around here)
- Silver gull
- A sound that could be a human or a cat meow. Kind of like words.
- Laughing Kookaburra
With the return of Gran comes the return of the carers and community staff who visit and check on her. But Gran is a little more frail now, so we are back to having visits 7 days a week. For such a private person such as myself it is both a blessing and a disturbance. Still, it is what it is. I find the Taoist philosophy to be the most conducive to managing this.
The television is also back on in the house. I did not miss it. Even during our forest retreat with my friend from the UK we did not have television or other devices. There was no coverage. It was fantastic!
And, I’ve moved all of Grans food back. The packaged pizzas, the meat pies and the pre-packaged meat skewers which are her current favourite. It is amazing how much space is taken up in the freezer with the packaging of items.
The shower seat and jig-saw puzzle table have been re-instated. The Little Fellas have remembered to whisper or talk softly when it is appropriate, though the rationale of this flies out of the window when there are Lego disputes.