Be Grateful for the Little Things

I'm obviously not entirely comfortable putting her face on here. I'll see how I feel about it in the morning. Having said that I like this over edited version, my eyelashes look pretty and she looks good without a nose and a top lip.

Grandmama Afam’s got dementia. I realise that this is a rather depressing way to begin a blog post, but it is what it is, and we’ve all got our shit. This is some of the stuff in my metaphysical baggage, but I’ll be honest, I don’t think it takes up that much space. It used to. It used to bug me that she didn’t and still doesn’t know who I am all of the time, or that she sometimes thinks that she’s a 16 year old schoolgirl on her way to secondary school, but then I realised that there’s no monopoly on pain. I realised that there were others who were hurting more than I was, GrandPapa Afam lost a wife, friend and confidante, Mama Afam and her sister lost a mother and my siblings and I lost a grandma. In the scale of how strongly the pain should have been felt I was probably second to the last. I couldn’t be a diva about it (well,I was for a little bit). I got on with it. We all have to get on with our shit.

For the most part she’s hilarious. She’s this Jack in the box that comes up with something new every time it pops out. She can go from saying utter jibberish to the picture of grandpapa Afam that she often mistakes for him, to scolding you like you were ten in no time at all. Those are the good days. Anytime she does something that the old her would do, I smile. It’s familiar. I can cope with that. I can forget for a second that she’s going to do the thing, in the thing, at the thing, with the thing, with her father (who’s dead by the way). Or I can forget that she’s running out of diapers and that I’ll need to get some new ones soon.

I’m starting to think that when we age we exhibit the traits that defined us most when we were young. When she was younger, she was a soldier of organisation, and a conqueror of mess. Now, she spends her days, and nights, (she’s a little bit of an insomniac) re-organising her wardrobe, and filching things she believes are hers, but aren’t. Grandpapa Afam’s very different. He’s still got all his wits about him. For as long as I’ve known him he’s had a listening problem. He’s more keen on telling you whatever it is he wants tell you than he is on listening. Now, I don’t even try to interject. Our conversations on the phone are largely one sided. It’s no surprise that he’s now partially deaf. Even though he’s bought himself a hearing aid, he refuses to wear it. So I suppose you could say that deafness becomes him.

In life you have to be grateful for the small stuff. Yesterday, while I was withholding some of my homemade meat pies (don’t be preposterous I didn’t make them) from Grandmama Afam, she said, “I can’t believe that it is you, my child that is doing this to me” in English. I very nearly died laughing. She hadn’t said a sentence that long in forever! The funny thing here was that it took the deprivation of meat pies to get it from her. And let’s not forget that she actually remembered who I was. She didn’t call me Mister, or Father, or Sir. While she didn’t call me Afam, she called me her child, but that’s preferable to all the other things she’s been calling me lately. Maybe that’s why I’m smiling on a Sunday Night even though I’ve got a to do list longer than my body, and the chances of me catching a wink of sleep tonight are slim.

Happy Days,


Nia said...

I liked this a lot.

MsLetomi said...

Me too <3

Anonymous said...

Little moments that make us smile are truly the ones we cherish ur blog...kemi

Enobee said...

This is the first post I'm reading on this site. I don't think it's going to be my last. I love how you infuse your personal life into your writing. Thanks for sharing with us the importance of cherishing the little goodnesses we have in our lifes. Cheers!

jade solomon said...

this is heartwarming

Ella said...

Where have you been all my life? I just stumbled on your blog today & I must say,you're an amazing writer...

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