Seeing my father

Date: 7/30/2019


After a drive in the bengwarden region for some unrelated matters which I do not recall. I start driving toward the Paynesville township to attend a party gathering at friend Ralph’s family home. Several of my friends are waiting for me at my mothers house, so that we can all leave together. It’s approx 5pm. As I pass the mailboxes and bus shelter, I think to myself... I may as well visit my father, I still have time and I’m so close by. Even though he has Alzheimer’s dementia I still want to spend time with him, and hoping that he’ll appreciate some time together. The next of my memory flashes, and I am inside the lounge room entering the kitchen via the sliding door. He’s standing there by the small central table, with his head facing down holding a knife, focusing on slicing meat. There seems to be a lot of meat along side other foods and beverages placed on the kitchen bench tops. The drinks are predominantly in plastic bags as if they were recently purchased. My father doesn’t even realise I’m standing there.... I call out, hey dad, how are you? Did you know I was here? He walks in my direction, passes me to enter the lounge room and walks toward the far windows facing the lake. He asks me, do you have plans tonight... in a tone of voice that clearly expresses, anger, jealousy and annoyance. I answer yes, I have an appointment. An appointment?? He asks in a skeptical tone.... as if it’s out of the ordinary or unlikely to have an appointment at such a late time. I explained that I was invited by some friends to join them for their cultural event mid-autumn festival. He checks his watch, and utters... “oh, it’s that time of year already” as he starts walking back to the kitchen... I follow him to the kitchen and notice, all of his drinks are spirits and different types of fruity looking beverages. Pilsner is one brand I distinctly sight... but not a beer. I ask him, oh don’t you drink beer anymore? He answers aggressively in a raised tone of voice... I can drink anything I want! I responded calmly, of course you can, I was only asking to know if you still like beer, so that when I come back I’ll know to buy you some of the usual beer or the new favourites. The remainder of his words are no longer clear in my memory... if they even were at all.... but his speech was so angry and defensive, while facing downward the entire time, speaking loudly to me with insults, describing his freedom to do what he wants.... I’m just merely listening to him as he speaks.... as I listen, i observe every word he chooses... I vividly imagine how different his personality has become since developing dementia. I feel so broken and upset inside thinking about the vast differences in character and behaviour, and appearance... I feel extremely sad and hopeless about his condition. I wake up in a sudden shock, with his angry voice still echoing in my mind before it fades away... my heart rate and blood pressure are elevated, slightly trembling