Monday, April 16, 2012
Sleeping with your grandmother
Grandma, we really had no idea when you served us a roast chicken that was raw inside that it would be last meal you would ever cook for us. While you were a perfunctory cook, normally your meals were nice enough. I think finally something clicked for Mother with the raw roast chicken and the next day you were hospital, never to return to North Road.
Grandma, I could be very critical of you for not standing up for yourself but then in a way you did by your silence at times. The silence of Moo made everyone alert and on edge.
But you know Grandma, I was the oldest and none of the others remember you as well as I do. Dear Grandma, I loved you so much and you loved me without conditions.
I can sing songs from the nineteen twenties because you sang them to me when we were in bed together. Grandma, I can remember asking you about the street lights that peeked through the blinds. We had no street lights on the farm.
Grandma, I can remember helping you with your corset in the morning, pulling in the cords. I did not understand then, but I now I do. You were a bit fat and saggy in the stomach and the corset gave you a better shape. I just remember now as I write, the corset had clips on the bottom and you would clip your hosiery to the clips.
Grandma, you were the best person I knew. But Grandma, was I an easy child to sleep with.
Jumping forward some forty plus years.
Sister and Bone Doctor rented some accommodation pre Easter at Phillip Island. Like for me, Phillip Island for Sister is our special family holiday place. Mother was invited down to stay too. Mother said yes, so long as you collect me after 12. I have my jobs to do, Mother said. That put pay for a friend of Sister's to pick up Mother and take her there early.
Sister and Bone Doctor had there digs upgraded to a three bedroom place on the Island.
Little Jo had been warned not to come into Sister and Bone Doctor's bed again. From her haze of medications, Mother became aware of Little Jo standing next to her bed at midnight. The last time this happened was when Mother was having an afternoon sleep and Little Jo was coming into the room and getting a Marie biscuit from her Nanny's bag. This time Little Jo wanted to get into bed with Nanny and Nanny had a dreadful nights sleep as Little Jo kicked, dreamt, talked and pushed Nanny out of the bed. Mother got out of the bed and into the other side, except that she then had a very high pillow. Mother did not have a good night's sleep and dined out on the tale and nor did Little Jo, who was grumpy the next morning.
I slept the sleep of the innocent when I slept with my Grandma. Although I may have been restless at times when in bed with Grandma, she never complained.