I’m free! I’m elated, but also, oddly apprehensive. Or at least I was last night. I fell asleep while watching YouTube, per yooz, but this time, I slept for an hour on the couch. Which made me think maybe I could go back to sleeping on the couch. Once I woke up, though, I was completely awake. I could not fall asleep again. I reluctantly went to my bed and still could not sleep.
You see, I was tense because I was waiting to hear my father yelling at my mother. It didn’t happen every night or even most nights, but it happened enough to have me hunching my shoulders and waiting for the ire. She didn’t tell me the worst of it (but she made sure to tell me that there was a worst of it), but what I heard was plenty bad. I only know that because of what my mother tells me because they only argue in Taiwanese. One of the endless discussions with my mother and brother is about how much of what my father does is a conscious decision and how much is his dementia. My mom thinks the delusions and paranoia are part of the dementia because they’ve gotten steadily worse. I think they’re controllable because he doesn’t do it in front of outsiders and rarely does it in front of me. My mother’s response to what I said was, weirdly, relief. I was freaked out because to me, him doing it on purpose was worse. She was relieved, however, because she said it was really scary (that’s when she told me there were worse things than him just thinking we’re all trying to steal his money) and it was less scary to think he could control it. Which, I can see why she would think that, but it would make it infinitely crueler.
He’s called my by the wrong name several times and has thought that I was my niece. He’s also thought my brother was my mother’s younger brother, and he’s asked my mom what her parents were doing right now. Her parents have been dead for decades as has his.