Friday, 26 September 2008

if the shoe fits

I'm on the phone with Mum:

"These slippers I'm wearing are too big, they're slipping off."

She's told me this a few times now. Last time I visited I checked and there was no looseness as far as I could tell, but I made a play of unfastening the velcro and pulling the fold-over tighter, and then Mum was content for another half hour until we went through the same process.

There's little point in me telling Mum that we had to buy them big because her feet were very swollen at the time and may well be again ("Really?" she'll ask, professing ignorance), or even that the velcro can be adjusted ("Well, I didn't know that!"), but I usually do go ahead and explain anyway.

This time she started relaying what I was saying to a member of staff. It went something like this:

"You can adjust them to make them tighter, if you want, Mum."
"Really? Oh... He's telling me that they fit"
"We had to buy them that size because your feet were so swollen a few months ago."
"I don't remember that."
"So... all you have to do is unfasten them and then pull the fastener over a bit further to make the slipper tighter."
"He's telling me that this is a company that takes pride in being one-size fits all and that these are special shoes that can fit anybody..."

I'm almost tempted to speak any old rubbish into the phone if she's going to make it all up anyway.


citygirl said...

I went through something somewhat similar with my mom. Except with her glasses. For some reason, she would constantly complain about her glasses not fitting or not working. We'd take to the eye doctor over & over again. We know now that Alzheimers patients sometimes experience seeing & perception difficulties (I guess their eyes & brains aren't communicating properly).

But it was painstaking to have her pick up her glasses and put them on and declare "these are not my glasses...who took my glasses?" and then she'd start eyeing up me or my siblings. I'd try to explain that prescription glasses are made especially for you so they wouldn't be of any use to other people. In the last few years, she forgot she even needed glasses.

Greg said...

Your "eyeing up" comment reminds me of something I noticed this last weekend. I took Mum to a Chinese restaurant and we were sitting there with our starters (mine veggie and hers seafood). She kept eyeing my plate with a sly glance and then reaching over with her fork to try and spear my spring roll. I think she's lost boundaries and perception - whilst she didn't seem to notice the food on her plate, there was also a part of it that looked 'naughty', like some part of her brain was saying "I prefer what's on his plate". It's like young kids who haven't yet learned what's good manners.