I do not remember a time when I am not anxious.
My mind's enthroned in the seventh circle of despair.
There she sits, on her wheelchair, rolling her eyes in wonder wearing a wistful of questioning. Questions she had no answers to and questions she trusted no one to answer them for her.
But sometimes the answers are not worth the hustle especially when the answers make her more tense and nervous, and even make her forget the little she had sieved from her past.
Eight months into her Alzheimer's and her memory had been wiped clean.
'Alzheimer's is a disease that has different turns on different people.' The doctor had told us at our last consultation, eight months ago.
But eight months is a quick time to just forget it all. As if it was never there.
Therapy sessions proved futile and the pictures from our album did not even spark an ounce of reminiscent.
But four days ago she remembered something.
Her little girl.
A tinker of hope relinquished in my spirits. I never thought I'd feel it.
And I'd do anything to sustain it.
By sustaining, I mean raising the money for the doctor's consultation fee. I had drained dry every single cent from my parent's bank accounts, for her therapy and medications, and the only thing left was the insurance policy my parents had left me, which she was made the sole administrator of.
And all I needed was her signature of authorisation, so I could use the money. But the Alzheimer's had taken a huge turn on her and she could not remember about the insurance, making her too adamant to sign it. At one point she called me a swindler for wanting to steal her money. And another a greedy manipulator. This leaving me in the mercies of my a hundred jobs and the good will of those who could be that good enough which even could hardly pay off well enough.
Juggling through my plumbing jobs in the mornings, deliveries at noon and bar waitress during the night plus baby sitting through the weekends just brought in enough for the doctor's consultation.
As to why, we were here patiently waiting outside his office today for a check up
She seemed more calmer and relaxed today compared to other days. I gave her two times the sedatives today, hoping they wouldn't wear out before we were back home.
"Are you okay, godmother." I ask her when I notice the worry she drew in her eyes.
She did not reply, just stared at me then kept looking at the wall. Lost.
"Do you need anything." I insisted.
"No, I already told you I do not know who you are and I don't need anything from you. " she raises her voice, just loud enough.
"Its me godmother, Vida, your little girl." I force a faint smile, hoping she'd familiarise.
"What little girl."
"The little girl, you rememberd me the other day, that was me."
"I don't know what you are talking, what little girl did I remember." she says beaming with no pleasurable anticipation
"You seriously don't remember,"
"Why, are you calling me crazy now, did you just call me crazy."
"Godmother, there's somethings you don't remember, you have this disease- "
She did not let me finish.
"Wait, what disease, why does everyone say am sick, am okay, why are we even here, am fine, I remember everything. I have a kid and a man, you just refuse to take me to them."
"Its not like that, your family left you a long time ago and that's why my parents took you to live with us, godmother, dont you remember." I don't know know how easy a smile slid from my face.
"You're lying, my family would never leave me, because I loved them. Your lying." sadness prevailed in her tone.
"Don't you remember. Am your little girl."
She did not speak for a while. The room fell into a dreamy silence. No one was around, we were the last of the patients and the ones before us had just got in, so it was just the two of us.
This was the right time to bring it up.
"Godmother, there's this insurance policy, my parents left me that you're in charge of, you need to sign it so we could continue to treat you, and I could go back to school."
School was a foreign concept for me. Even between my jobs, I'd not balance school stuff and all, so I had to give up one. And it had to be the one that did not bring food on the table.This was not the kind of life my parents would have wanted for me, and this wasn't the kind of life I familiarised with.
But I was going to work just as hard.
How things change.
"Am not sick, what parents are you talking about and I already told you, you cannot steal from me" seriousness lurked in the depth of her eyes.
Tears now freely flowing, I said "You should fight this, you have to get better, for us, don't leave me to this"
"Stop crying, you'll make me feel guilty for doing nothing, I told you, I don't know who you are, so I cant help." A pit of sincere concern sounded in her voice
She kept repeating words. 'I don't know who you are'.
Was this getting worse.
Fishing out a picture from my bag hoping she'd remember something. I always carried it around, just in case her condition was to change. It was a picture of both us, in some street, the day my parents had a huge fight, and I had gone to cry it out, then she found me lying on the grass, like she always knew where she could find me. We were so happy.
I hoped it would spark something. Although several times I showed her but nothing
I placed it on her lap, pointing it with my index finger.
"Do you remember this,"
Totally unbothered, she lifted the picture to her face, giving it the microscopic minutenes of her eyes, scrutinizing, and suddenly a trench of tears ebbed from her eyes, flooding her satin scarf that she had been using to wipe them off.
"You cried your eyes out and I could not stop you. And when you stopped crying, you started laughing on your own."
"Vida, my little girl."
"Next" a voice barked to call us in.
"Let's go in now Godmother."