I talked to Mum about yesterday’s adventure and showed her my prize, an engraved paperweight. She seemed engaged, nodding in all the right places and smiling with genuine pleasure. Then:
“We got in a right mess, didn’t we!”
I agreed, with a laugh, but I have no idea what she meant. Such are the mysteries of dementia.
With conversation beyond us, I turned to music and we sang “Getting to Know You” from “The King and I” with unusual gusto. Then, though, Mum became increasingly lost to me, head down, eyes closed, nodding gently to the music. Eye contact is so important and it was proving elusive. Then, as the title song from one of Mum’s favourite musicals came on, she seemed to stop nodding as well. I thought I’d lost her for the day but when the chorus arrived, she threw back her head, eyes wide:
“Ooooo-klahoma, where the sun comes shining round the bend”.
Back down went her head, and her eyes closed once more.
I’ll never understand what’s going on but I know, deep down, that connection remains.