A bit of a to-do

It was the wedding yesterday (separate post to follow), and after a bit of a hit and miss effort, we went but didn’t stay.
Gone are the days of Uncles, Aunts and Grandparents from both sides getting together for a right royal knees up, of little babies from the latest generation toddling into the waiting arms of doting parents.
With the modern family consisting of divorcees (several times around), single parents for whatever reason, and whiney kids, well, let’s say Maggie was better behaved than some.

Apart from my Mum, sister and her current gentleman friend, the bride, groom, bridesmaids (OK, I didn’t know which great niece was which at first), a nephew I haven’t seen since my Dad died and a vaguely familiar face from my brother-in-law’s funeral in 2010 who I believe is a friend of my eldest niece, I didn’t know anyone.
I saw my great great nephew, our fifth generation, for the first time. He’ll be four on Christmas Day and was running screaming around all the time, so we weren’t introduced.
I did however get my finger sucked by a lovely little girl of 9 months who was nothing to do with the family. She also gave me one of the biggest smiles ever which was enough to melt my heart.

Having got up early and leaving here before 7am, we arrived well in time for the midday ceremony. One of the venue staff was waiting to show us to a shady spot knowing we had the dog and Hubby is walking with sticks as I’d called beforehand.
However, we knew our place at the wedding breakfast had been passed to someone else because we didn’t know exactly what was happening until the last minute, which was perfectly understandable as everything had already been paid for.

My Mum had been deposited in the seating area for the ceremony and was alone.
She looked lost, bewildered and forlorn, so Hubby and I looked after her for the time we were there.
Her dementia is worsening, and by all accounts my sister is getting no support from either social care or her doctor, which is obviously taking a toll on her. I found our conversation strained and accusatory, so left her with her beau who, when I suggested she go back to Social Services to push for assistance and advice, was also a little hostile in my direction.

Mum didn’t know who Hubby was and didn’t recognise me either at first.
She did however remember my nephew (he’s a lovely young man and his girlfriend is equally nice), so we all closed ranks and sat with her to give her some familiarity.
Afterwards, everyone moved into the garden for canopes and drinks whilst the happy couple mingled and socialised, sort of,  before the sit down do at 2.30.
Not knowing anyone, being over the hill agewise and neither smokers, e-inhalers or drinkers, we didn’t fit. And knew it. Someone nearly put a hole in my frock with their cigarette, and the smog under the trees was nothing to do with the weather.
We found a bench for Mum and made sure she had something to eat and drink whilst the nibble trays were passed around. Apart from water and a request for orange juice, there was nothing really for tee totallers like us. With nowhere to sit, I could see how much pain Hubby was in having to stand around. Maggie was now in the car, not in disgrace, but to keep her lungs clear and out of the way of people who may (or may not) try to give her titbits which would undoubtedly upset her stomach.

We left after the photographs were taken in the grounds and before the breakfast started, asking my nephew if he would mind looking after Nan as my sister was ‘otherwise engaged’.
To be honest, I got the impression Sis didn’t want to be there or have anything to do with events, let alone my Mum. My niece and her new husband had arranged and paid for everything themselves anyway.
It was lovely to see my nephew, I hugged him so tight, he could scarcely breathe. He said ‘Don’t ever change Aunty Di,’ and that, with the little girl I mentioned earlier, made the day for me as I came away with mixed feelings.

We got home just before 6pm, hungry and shattered, so in posh frock and togs, we treated ourselves to a chinese. Maggie, bless her had slept most of the way.

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! We have recently lost our beloved dog Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney, and now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of my GSD so had hers done too. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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12 Responses to A bit of a to-do

  1. Sorry you didn’t have much fun. Too bad about the family problems. There is not much help from social services for the elderly.

  2. The unfamiliarity of the whole thing may have also thrown your mother off too. Yes, your sis has to fight for stuff. No one provides without a fight. Once you get settled perhaps you can take her for a week now and then although when my mother-in-law had dementia that didn’t work. She didn’t want to be away from home and would be unhappy and sometimes unruly. I also find that except for very close family that I see all the time and close friends, these events aren’t fun. Relatives you rarely see and have nothing in common with are like strangers. (I’m surprised that there are still heavy smokers around. It’s rare in my area. Lots of media stories about the effects although the kids still do it when they’re young.) You did get a beautiful dress out of it though. Glad Maggie made it through the day ok.

    • I agree with you Kate. Whilst we would happily have Mum for a holiday as we did before for a month or two at a time, we know she wouldn’t come, and also that my sister would not bring her to us. We are currently 130 miles away, a trip of anything between 3 and a half and five hours, and where we are looking, it’s further away again, but we have to look where our money will go the furthest. Even when we were local, we did all the running around. Hubby and I both feel that Mum needs professional full time care now (and that’s not a reflection on my sister) but Sis is not going to get anywhere without finding and pushing the right buttons, and the best place to start, I think anyway, is with her GP. I feel for my Mum so much, and feel so helpless because there is nothing practical I can do other than write and visit when we can.

  3. foguth says:

    Does your Mum take anything for her dementia? I’ve heard that Lion’s Mane can be helpful for that… it’s a bizarre looking mushroom & available as an herbal cure, so isn’t overly expensive in the states.

    • I have no idea as my sister doesn’t keep me informed about anything at all. I know Mum is on medication from her doctor ad they have recently stopped one particular pill as it was making her dizzy. I’m afraid I’m the last to know anything there, and only find out how Mum really is when we visit, which at the moment isn’t as often as I’d like as we are frantically house hunting.

      • foguth says:

        It is doubtful that her doctor prescribed Lion’s Mane… at least, it would be doubtful here, in the US, where big pharma likes doctors to prescribe high dollar medicine. Lion’s Mane isn’t super pricy, but seems to do a good job.

      • I haven’t heard of it I’m afraid, and in normal circumstances I would pass it on. However, Sis wouldn’t handle the suggestion very well. But thank you anyway.

      • foguth says:

        I take a half dose as a preventive measure because my father had dementia and feel that it helps make thinking clearer… if you have dementia in your family, you might want to do something preventive, too.

      • It’s certainly a thought……..

      • foguth says:

        I thought about it before I decided to give it a try… I don’t like the taste, but do like not groping for a name, etc.

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