Before I became a spotty teenager, my sister knew who I was. You could tell because she would pull my hair and try to strangle me, just like any loving sister.
When she was taken into care and was hidden away in an old castle on a mountain in Wales (that’s what they used to do with special children back then), she began to disengage from me. She would still greet my Mum, but I was invisible.
Now our Mum is demented, I have become my sisters legal guardian. In addition I am her Deputy (like a power of attorney) for her finances, personal wellbeing and medical decisions. I completed the last of the overly extensive paperwork yesterday. (Or at least I hope that was the last of it!)
A ridiculous part of the process is that I have to tell my sister that all this is happening. My sister has brain damage and doesn’t have use of or understanding of verbal communication. She lacks the concepts to understand in other ways too so expressive dance wouldn’t get the message in either, much to my disappointment.
My sister likes cashew nuts and peeling off the wall paper. She doesn’t give a fig about paperwork.
But by law, I had to go and ‘tell’ her.
I don’t often see my sister without the demented one (Mum). If I’m on my own, it’s usually because I’m calling in to give my sister (her carers) some cash to do activities in the community, for example visiting a garden centre or going swimming. It’s a fleeting visit because it’s not a very welcoming place and my sister acts like I’m invisible and walks off when I talk to her.
However yesterday I had to have a ‘conversation’ with her, and let her know I was now in charge of her life because we can’t trust the demented one with decisions these day.
And a special thing happened. She launched at me, grabbed my hair, and then went for my glasses. All this as I was saying “…So I’m going to be the one looking after you now. I’m the only one who isn’t crazy, I’m all you’ve got. Suck it up.”
Then she tried to strangle me.
So either she just found me very annoying yesterday (understandable. I annoy myself at times) or she really did know it was me and her usual sisterly loathing bubbled up into an urge to constrict her skinny finger round my neck.
I like to think it was the later – and that it meant “Ta very much. You’re a rockstar.”