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SOCIAL WORKER AND COMMUNITY Psychiatric Nurse (professionals): CHECK. Brother, mother and me: check. Subject: father. Meeting: begin.

The realisation that he cannot cope with both his job and his own self-appointed position as carer has settled into my brother’s mind at about every level. After weeks...

YES, NICE WEATHER AGAIN. Yes, ‘this’; yes, ‘that’ and bloody yes, ‘the other’. Bus. Joke with driver. Tired tales of bus journeys. Stories of how that bloody TV show in the sixties predicted so many mothers without rings on their fingers – PLEASE! MAKE IT STOP! MAKE IT ALL STOP! Routine? This isn’t...

CHEAP MAGIC CAN WORK. The whirlwinds inside have threatened to tear me apart. The rages of frustration and dungeons of despair; the misery of premature mourning and the emptiness of impotent hope. Uncertainty of the immediate future and being taunted by haunting memories – and wondering about the mi...

She asks me if she’s stuttering and twitchy, and I have to tell her that she is, but it’s because she is tired. In fact, she is too tired to enjoy the diagnosis of not having dementia but some other condition which affects the memory and can be treated. Mother is this tired because as well as her tr...

“AT LEAST IT’S NOT ACTUALLY RAINING,” she said. No. Not actually raining, just the threat of that murky drizzle on the horizon. Oh look, here’s the bus. What? The draught? Rather enjoyable, I think… it’s keeping me cool, and so my feet. What? Yes, my feet. The tendons underneath are injured – no, I...

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