wings and things

There’s ‘a Julie’ in the mirror.

There is something beautiful about the fact that sometimes Anthony will see the same camellias I picked for him days ago as today’s – new and fresh.


The other day, as I was leaving Ants to come home, he spotted my reflection in his wardrobe mirror. (His armchair is in one corner of the room and, if he turns his head to the right, he can see himself in this mirror).

Anthony: There’s a Julie over there.

Me: (turning to face myself in this mirror) Yes, that’s me … actually that’s US in the mirror.

Anthony: Oh, of course.

Me: You idiot!
(Don’t be alarmed; Anthony quite likes a bit of gentle verbal abuse now and then).

Apart from the visual hallucinations (often of cats which is weird because Anthony doesn’t like cats), there is also a certain amount of visual confusion lately. Ants’ view to the left is through a window overlooking a lawned area where he often sees cattle; the newsreaders and/or characters on television are sometimes mistaken for real people to whom Anthony will often respond verbally; his walker can become a lawnmower; the staff going up and down the hallway are ‘kids’ or ‘teachers’ or long-deceased relatives; and the blanket on his knees (lately a source of enormous confusion as the day progresses) is unrecognisable to him as a blanket until ….

Me: Will you stop pushing the blanket off! I thought you were cold, Ants!

Anthony: It’s just … I don’t know what this is, Jules.

Me: It’s a blanket, to keep you warm, so I’m going to put it back on your lap and put your hands under it and, if you move, I will bop you!

Anthony: You’re beautiful when you’re angry.

Me: Argh!

This particular blanket has a tartan pattern and a fringe, and is one of ours from home. Other rugs and blankets (particularly those with patterns of any kind) can really confuse Anthony, but I have only recently realised this. For example, if the pattern is one of flowers, Ants might see these as real flowers and want to touch or rearrange them.

None of these visual hallucinations/misrecognitions currently cause Anthony undue distress, especially when I am with him. On the other hand, I sometimes wonder what he might be ‘seeing’ when I’m not there. When I think about this too much, I get worried, so I mostly try not to think about it for the sake of my own peace of mind. After all he is in good care.

But I just wish I could somehow leave myself in that wardrobe mirror so that whenever Anthony glanced to the right I’d be there….


…. like the camellias.