the family that stick together, shares the elephants.


My Mum suffered a fall during the week. The poor woman is doubly incontinent and can no longer walk, yet they persevere with lifting her onto the toilet. The issue is that they leave her sitting there while they make her bed. One morning this week she toppled off the loo. Such indignity.

Doctor and physiotherapist both declared no serious damage, thankfully. The poor woman must have fairly strong bones as she has taken a number of tumbles over the years and thankfully the only thing she has ever broken are toes!

At the same time, she has been suffering with a urinary tract infection and is on her third course of antibiotics. A UTI can make an older person quite confused anyway.

Today, she seemed to know me without prompting as she gave a little smile as I walked in, and her eyes followed me until I drew close to her, then she grasped my hand. Her dear right hand is curling into that claw position of the old, which is sad. All the gardening, crafting and caring those hands have done in their 88 years, now even they are forgetting what they do.

sisters 1

My sister visited Mr FD and I. As I was setting down the tea mugs in the living room, I noticed that Mr FD had placed two very ugly beige brown elephant bookends on a cabinet. He had been searching for our passports, and came across the bookends amongst the items that he had brought from his parents’ home after the sale of their house.

The elephants may have had their trunks up in the good luck position but they are ugly. I don’t know how they managed it but everything in his parents house seemed to be a sad beige colour, dulled by years of exposure to cigarette smoke as well. Depressing. I have been trying to clear our house of our own excess and Mr FD insists on bringing more into the house.

The elephants are depressing, as I said, so I moved very quietly to place them out of eyesight for now. Of course, my sister noticed and had to pipe up “Oh what beautiful elephants!”

Then she launched into a dozen different ways we could use them around the house. Naturally, Mr FD had to then take umbrage at my moving the elephants which he had not noticed until my sister spoke up. My sister thought it a great game.

I told Mr FD that I would have them turned into earrings to hang from his rather large ear lobes if he loved them so much. My sister was enjoying herself no end, despite my reminding her just whose sister she was! Well, that was until I told her I had just the perfect Christmas gift for her…

Revenge is sweet.


9 thoughts on “the family that stick together, shares the elephants.

  1. could you paint or stain them? would that help or make them worse?
    sorry to read about the tumble but glad your mum is relatively okay.
    i’ve noticed i clench my hands a LOT, especially i my sleep, and it’s freaking me out.


  2. I’m so sorry to hear about your mother. It’s bad enough to grow old and frail, but to have to have strangers place you on the toilet, only to tumble off of it, seems horrible.

    In the U.S. we have white elephant gift exchanges where party goers wrap silly used items and give them to each other as “surprises.” The idea is that everyone gets a good laugh out of seeing what each person has received. Maybe you can give someone those sad beige elephants as a surprise?


    • Maybe I should join the “Secret santa” at work this year – where you give an anonymous gift to a colleague. I am thinking maybe I should list them on eBay – some bad taste idiot might pay money for them!


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