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melting but not down

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Prozac comes to the rescue

If it weren't for the magic pills I think I would have spontaneously combusted on Saturday. Lulled into a false sense of security by mum's good mood on Thursday I wasn't expecting the 4' 7" of fury that greated me on my arrival. She'd received her gas bill and was outraged at the amount due. *What had happened was that after several estimated bills (the meter reader tends to knock and run), I rang in the correct reading which was considerably higher than expected, which meant that the direct debit hadn't paid as much off the total as usual.* Mum was convinced that a) I'd read the meter incorrectly so it was my fault, b) the gas company was trying to fleece her and c) they were going to help themselves to the outstanding amount (about £180) from her bank account, none of which were true. Even with her hearing aid in, I couldn't get it through to her that a) I was perfectly capable of reading four numbers off a display and passing them on, b) her gas provider was not trying to diddle her - the bill was the result of *--* and c) the direct debits would continue as usual to chip away at the amount owed. There was much muttering of how her (now deceased) saintly neighbour (a man of course) would have sorted it out and a lot of 'everything happens to poor unlucky me' diatribe. I managed not to lose my cool but resigned myself to a miserable day.

What do you know - no sooner had we set off for Morrisons, than Mrs Hyde was replaced by Doctor Jekyll. Smiles and jokes and pleasant chat! I was used to riding out mum's moods but usually it took a lot longer than this, I was hoping it was a new development that would be the norm from now on. I relaxed. Fatal. Back at the ranch all was going swimmingly until the telephone rang. Expecting the usual nuisance cold call, I was pleasantly surprised to find my Auntie B on the other end of the phone. I haven't spoken to her since my dad's funeral in 1999. I haven't spoken to any of his relatives since the funeral. And not for decades before that. The reason? Mum can't stand them. When I was still a child, she stopped going with dad and me to nana and granddad's every weekend to meet up with the aunts, uncles and cousins. This meant that I stopped too, fearing her displeasure for choosing to spend time with them instead of her. Consequently I have been denied the pleasure and support of an extended family for most of my life. Anyway to get back to Auntie B. She was writing her Xmas cards and wanted to check mum was still at her address as she knew she had been in hospital this time last year. We had a pleasant chat and I went to put mum on the phone as she was hovering close by. When I said (shouted) that it was B and handed her the phone, she pulled a 'nasty taste' face and refused to say anything. I told Auntie B mum didn't have her hearing aid in (fib). Of course this brief contact from the other side started mum off on her usual rant against B and all the slights she imagines she's endured from her over the years. There was no appeasing her so I did the sensible thing and took my leave. I indulged in some calming retail therapy then went home and was in bed by 7.30pm, exhausted.

Wide awake again at 12.30 am, I've sorted laundry out, had a cup of tea and will eventually go back to bed when I'm all blogged out. Ah well, good day ahead - birthday Sunday lunch with about 20 friends, should be fun!


oldcrow61 said...

My dear, I don't know how you get through it all. I'm afraid that I wouldn't have the patience. My heart goes out to you. Hope you had fun at the Sunday lunch. Hugs.

Lily said...

Cheers oldcrow! Yes, thank you, the Sunday lunch was very good :-)

Clippy Mat said...

what a woman!!!!
you desrve a medal.
(she's a good read tho')
hope you had a good birthday.