During a routine tidy of a little used storage area within chez Strachan, I stumbled upon on old car first aid kit of my fathers. One look at this ageing collection of bandages, plasters, lints, micropore tape et al, revealing the old man’d procured this medical mishmash a good few years back.

In fact, upon opening this fusion of wound treatment products, they looked so old I wouldn’t have been overly shocked to find a jar of leeches and instructions on preparing boil poultices within. One look identifying these supposedly sterile items hadn’t been aseptic since around the time my 31 year old son Jonathon was born.

On a few occasions of late my mum’s received cuts on her hand through minor accidents consequential of her dementia and post-stroke mobility issues. Ironically, after those particular incidents I’d been unable to find any plasters to treat those minor grazes; subsequently using kitchen towel and antiseptic cream to treat the wounds.

That being said, even if I’d have been aware of this antiquated first aid kit at that time, would I’ve dare utilise any of its archaic contents for dressing the injury? Some of the items, such as the swabs, which’d been previous opened would clearly not’ve been suitable for use.

However, there are items whose original packaging hadn’t been breached, including a few plasters and gauze. There’s no ‘use by date’ on the items, but yours truly obviously don’t want to introduce infection jeopardy by risking germ transfer. Especially in these COVID times where caution is king, or queen – Depending on caution’s gender.

Even if fit for purpose products reside within this aged once sterile pack, sadly there’s no cure for dementia within its dusty pouch.

That being said, even if such an efficacy existed, it wouldn’t be included within a first aid kit. Like any medication, the cost would be too prohibitive for the set manufacturers – Plus my mum’s dementia is a degenerative disease, not a consequence of unexpected minor medical incident.

I’ve absolutely no idea why I’ve just tried to explain away why this set of medical products doesn’t include things like expensive medications…. Especially one’s which don’t exist!…… Initially included as a whimsical observation, I somehow found myself wandering a fictional path which was eccentric even by my standards…… Have a word with yourself Strachan!

Although bereft of an objective gauge, the prevailing plateau of my mother’s dementia remains mercifully mild. The incidents of confusion and irrational behaviour not yet plummeting into the realms of utter disorientation which, I’m informed by peers who’ve already experienced the full turgid journey with loved ones, is inevitable.

I appreciate and will embrace everyone’s support and offer of insight into life as a carer of a dementia sufferer. However, I’m unsure at times whether learning of the odyssey ahead is a good or bad thing. Tips/pointers at addressing the challenges are obviously much appreciated. That being said, news of the starker episodes ahead can be somewhat disconcerting.

Since my mum’s official diagnosis I’ve endeavoured, and thus far succeeded, in interacting with her in a calmer more tolerant manner. Although I knew which medical conclusion was coming prior to the doctors confirmation of the matriarch’s cognitive affliction, things remained fraught between us until last weeks corroboration of the facts.

Affirmation my mum’s mental health is only going to degenerate has been a catalyst to calmer and collected exchanges between the two of us. Knowledge the funny, bright, switched on woman will never return, only slip deeper into confusion and erratic behaviour, shaking me to the core.

News driving home yours truly’s need to step up even further, making her remaining time with us as comfortable and stress free as possible. Especially, at this juncture while she maintains a level of understanding at her prevailing existential landscape.

Anyhow, I’m going to conclude this piece to make my mum a cuppa and bin the contents of the archaic first aid kit…… Enjoy your day!

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