Sunday, 25 May 2014

WordPress Daily Prompt: Break the Silence

When was the last time you really wanted (or needed) to say something, but kept quiet? Write a post about what you should’ve said.

Im Reich der Sinne  08.05.1008

This is what they did to me when I could not keep quiet. They could not find a bandage large enough for my big mouth, so they decided when I could not see it, I did not know what it was and made no remarks. Honestly are WordPress testing me? My famous last words on the forums make a mark on the blogging landscape, I cannot keep it for myself. The last remark spread over two pages and eventually I gave up as one of the experts together with an assistant expert took over the conversation and I was left out in the cold. Actually it was a photo taken at one of our first aid helper training evenings. We were studying the senses and had to eat something but could not see it, so we were blindfolded. Not that you think the Swiss are employing methods to get the truth out of you. You cannot hide anything in Switzerland, even if you want to build a hut in the garden you have to get planning permission.

What is “kept quite”? I do not even think those words exist in the polyglot tongues that I speak, or I just missed them out, although I do have a sort of inborn defect. I grew up in the big city (London) with lorries thundering past at all times, street criers selling their goods on the market “two for a penny missus, and all the best” etc. etc. and you had to make yourself heard, otherwise you would have been ignored. The only time I was ever silent was during the day when my dad was on night work and he was sleeping. I think mum would have shut my mouth up forever if I had even breathed too loudly, dad’s sleep was holy. Luckily I was at school or at work most of the day so I did not have to keep my mouth shut.

I grew up in a loud family so I blame it on the genes. Mum had a loud voice – she had two sisters and they were often engaged in shouting competitions. I think the winner was Aunt Annie, or was it Aunt Lil. My mum was the youngest so I suppose it was the hierarchy that counted. There was one brother, but he seemed to let the women get on with it. This was coupled with a dad that served on the heavy canons in the Second World War and returned home, but with a slight hearing defect. No-one really noticed that he did not hear so well, until we had this new-fangled telephone thing. It would ring for at least five minutes and we thought he ignored it until we discovered that he did not really hear it so well. When we had the additional bell fixed up in the hall, the whole street heard the telephone ring and sometimes even dad did.

Dad worked in a loud factory all his life, so things did not improve. It was just a case of speaking a little louder. Now he is 98 years old. His hearing has not improved, but it is just a matter of getting used to things and talking to him in a loud clear voice. When he says “yes” after every word you say, you know he does not hear, so just say it again.

These are the facts, and so I was at a disadvantage from the beginning. It was a question of survival, say what you want to say in a loud clear voice. What is the point of keeping quiet about it, you might be ignored and left on one side. It can be that this might become an annoyance in my surroundings, people not really wanting or needing a loud voice, or not really wanting my opinion, although there are times when I can be quite silent: one of the reasons why my blogging episodes are so popular. When I am writing my prize winning masterpieces for the WordPress world (copy to Blogger world) my brain is talking, an internal thing. I have to train my lines of thought into a pattern. I am sure Charles Dickens and even Charles Bukowski (what is he doing here?) would agree. There are times to be silent and times not to be silent (now I know what Bukowski is doing here).

And now to something completely different: I was very concerned over the past two days about my 98 year old dad. I wrote in my blog that he had had a fall, was in hospital and has now been fitted with a pacemaker. Yesterday he was very confused. I have a wonderful dear friend, from my school days, who looks in on him for me now and again because I am so far away. She is visiting him in the hospital once a day and now takes her mobile phone with her. I can now call her at an arranged time and speak to my dad on the phone, as English hospitals do not have phones for the patients in the rooms. My dad now feels a lot better, and realises what has happened. The first two days were just too much for him, his daily routine being mixed up. He realises that he has a pacemaker and now feels a lot better. I had a shouting match with him on the mobile phone and it worked very well, so tomorrow at the same time my friend said. She is a gift for me at the moment and I know when I go to London I can always stay at her house. There are some people you meet on the path of life that are blessings in disguise and she is definitely one of them.

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  1. I am so pleased to hear that your dad is doing better and is less confused about things now.

    I had a call from my mom today to say that my step-father is in hospital for heart tests as he has been having chest pains on and off recently. He is already diagnosed as suffering from slow-progression Alzheimers. He is not coping well with being in hospital and apparently keeps threatening to "escape". I think it must be the confusion of not being in familiar surroundings, as he is not so bad at home.

    1. I have been very lucky with my dad in that respect. His main problem is his legs, although the doctor says that now with the pacemaker, it should be a little better. I was very worried yesterday and he was completey confused but today he was his old self, and I could talk with him quite well. Up to now I have no signs of Alzheimer or demenz and he is very careful about his appearance. I would rather see him relax in a track suit but he still has his shirt and pullover and trousers. He is just my dad. I have my friend living near to him and we talk quite a lot on the phone (Skype). I hope things go well with your step father. It is a great strain on the family and unfortunately there is not very much that you can do. It must be a worry for your mum.