Progress, Yo

My mum is getting better.

Every day she’s a little stronger, physically, mentally and verbally. Obviously there is the occasional half-day when she feels particularly weak or fed-up, and sometimes she gets a little blue. But we have a Doc Martin DVD on hand for that.

Once a day she walks up and down the corridor outside the flat, for exercise. It’s about a 12-metre round trip, but she hasn’t done it yet today. She did sweep up some flower petals though, and yesterday she wiped a table. It isn’t much, but she still gets out of breath easily.

‘If I had the strength, I’d run a Hoover over this rug.’

There’s a lot of that.

We laugh.

She still does a tad too much vacant staring for my liking, but maybe that’s just part of being in your eighties. Either way, to offset boredom and stimulate a more active engagement with life, I’ve been buying lots of books and DVDs, encouraging her to do more crosswords, and leaving potentially interesting Wikipedia pages open on the eating table over lunch. James Last. Bobby Thompson. That kind of thing. And I’ve been playing Foster and Allen on Spotify.

I’d love to get her into the internet. But I fear that kitten has flown.

Tomorrow though, I’m heading into super-friendly Fopp to buy the Breaking Bad box set. I see no reason an octogenarian Heartbeat fan can’t still enjoy Breaking Bad.

I’m hoping that she’ll empathise with Walter’s downtrodden angst in the early episodes and then get dragged in and hooked for the rough stuff to come. I reckon it’d do her the world of good. Plus I’ll get to watch it again, which is nice. Let’s face it, whether she gets into it or not, I get to watch it again. Even if I have to pack her off to her bedroom for 62 consecutive hours or strap her in her comfy chair and force her to watch with me…


Hopefully though, in a couple of months’ time, she’ll be all, ‘If I had the strength, I’d be the one who knocks.’

Mother’s just walked the corridor. She put Lewis on pause when I mentioned it, and walked it twice. She is the one who knocks.

I followed her out and we looked the blossom on the tree in the back garden.

‘I am … awake,’ I said.

But she’d gone by then.



About the Author

I am Karl Webster. I wrote these words. If you liked them, you’ll be overjoyed to know that there are plenty more where they came from. So you should definitely sign up to my newsletter if you haven’t already.

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