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Scary Hallucinations

weather: cloudy
outside: 2°C
mood: worried
music: Luciano Pavarotti - Recondita Armonia
Grandma Xiao-E started seeing things Monday night. At first it was only once or twice a day, but then it got worse and worse. Wednesday and Thursday (their Thursday), it had gotten to the point where she would only snap to attention when they called out to her, otherwise, she would be trying to focus on the images and things.

She sees a white ball flying around her and a kite. She kept asking the family to help her catch the ball, grab the kite's string and why couldn't they see it?! Then she asked one of Husband Guy's Aunts if she had brought her husband over because she saw a dark figure of a person(!).

She also had delusions that the dark figure was a person who was wanting to steal her money. She picked up her walking stick and said she wanted to beat that person up if they tried to take her money. It was fortunate that she had no strength in her legs and couldn't get up. They somehow convinced her that there was no one there...

The last I heard, Grandma's sleeping again after about 48+ hours of not being able to sleep. This is a good thing. Aunt-3 is taking her to the hospital where a relative is a doctor to see if there's anything they can do or recommend.

Geriatric hallucinations are quite common, especially when some kind of chronic illness is present. Grandma is diabetic, she has been for quite a long time now. It's being controlled with medication, but it's still there. Sometimes she tries to diagnose her own symptoms without talking to anyone and increases her own dosage. And sometimes she forgets to take her medication.

Husband Guy's Aunt lives with Grandma and tries her best to take care of Grandma. But there are conflicts (as there are bound to be) when Grandma thinks she's the same reasoning adult that she used to be.

The two of them have mismatching temperaments too. Husband Guy's Aunt is a quick paced, straight forward, no bullshit kind of woman. She's a Senior Auditor at a major national bank. She's had to be. But that doesn't translate well to geriatric care.

I suspect Grandma also suffers from clinical depression to some degree. She's had a tough life. She came from a large family and married into a large family. She grew up while the Japanese occupied the island of Formosa and then the Kuomintang. Grandma had more education than most girls of her time (she reads newspapers).

Her husband's family was not kind to her at all. Husband Guy's maternal grandfather was one of the younger sons in the family, so the older, uneducated bumpkin sisters-in-law would gang up on Grandma.

For instance, they somehow got her to do their laundry (laundry was all done by hand back then, remember). She didn't really think much of it... until she was mistaken for one of the family maid servants. Or someone made a snide remark about Grandpa's family being "so dirt poor that they had to get one of the _wives_ to do laundry".

Grandpa loved her very much and treated her very well. Which was unheard of back then. Men did not dote on their wives nor show any kind of affection. That was equivalent to "fearing the wife". It was just not done. The older siblings/in-laws goaded Grandpa relentlessly on this. The net result is that Grandpa turned prickly around the edges towards Grandma. And by the time they didn't have to put up with the bullshit, Grandpa was accustomed to treating her that way.

Grandpa still treated Grandma really well for a man of his time. He never reprimanded her for trivial things like most men did to keep up the Tough Man/Head of the Household image. He was good with his children, very affectionate with his grandchildren and didn't try to overpower Grandma for her difference in childraising methods. When they found out that Grandma had severe motion sickness, he always let Grandma sit in the front seat next to the driver because that helped. He wasn't too proud to sit in the back.

Grandpa has been gone for quite a few years now. Grandma, I guess in her reminiscing, had been thinking about how he was cold and unaffectionate to her, never travelled with her. She would always bring up how Husband Guy's paternal Grandfather took paternal Grandmother all over the world. And MIL Woman would have to explain to Grandma that "the grass is greener on the other side of the fence because of the bullshit".

MIL Woman has told me that Husband Guy's paternal Grandfather had one of the worst tempers known to the Universe. It's weakened with age and lack of energy, but he pushed Grandmother to the verge of suicide more than once in her life. No one in the family seems to have much doubt that Grandmother's cancer was a direct result of the stress that he caused her. It's quite obvious and I don't think anyone will disagree with me when I say Husband Guy's paternal family is much less affectionate to Grandfather.

But Grandma, in her illogical way, would think that any of this kind of explaining, by MIL Woman or any of the Aunts was taking Grandpa's side. And she'd get pissed off. When she gets pissed off, her blood pressure rises. Of which, severe nosebleeds and dizzy spells are the best that can happen.


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