Friday, June 16, 2006

Bad luck comes in Three's!

Bloody hell, just when we're supposed to start relaxing...

Just after I posted yesterday, I got a call from my mother. She sounded like she was about to burst in to tears, and told me that she'd been assaulted while at work. She works for social services, taking care of kids in small, temporary homes, and on Wednesday night, two of them had gone crazy, smashing up the house, braking windows and attacking the staff. After swaring at her and throwing water all over her for hours, which she could tolerate and was trying to control, it got way out of hand, and one of them came at her with an iron bar. Bare in mind that there are certain things she's aloud to do to protect herself, so she can try to restrain the kids to an extent, but she can't hurt them in any way. This is the part that makes me mad, although obviously I can see that the rules are there for a reason. But this little bastard is flying at my mum with this iron bar, waving it around through the air, she can't lock them in a room, she can't lock them out of the house, and the best she can do is try and move away and protect herself from getting hit. The result was that he smashed her on the arm with it, resulting in a hairline fracture, and sent her flying across the room, landing on her back and smacking her head. Then, when she finally got up and went to restrain the kid with the bar, the other kid who was involved went to smack her over the head with a chest of draws. Thankfully, he lost his nerve and failed, but the other member of staff was also assaulted, the management had to be called in, and eventually the kids were arrested and mum was taken to the hospital. It just makes me so fucking mad, because if she'd tackled him and basically hurt him so that he couldn't hit her, she would have been prosecuted for assaulting a minor and would have lost her job. So what, she has to put up with this shit from two twelve year old boys? It's rediculous, and even the management admitted there isn't enough in place to protect the staff as well as the kids. So that was one bit of bad luck, mainly for my mum. She said she just wanted a cuddle, and I felt awful for being miles away, and so have sent her flowers and a card.

The second bit of bad luck, is that people seem to be getting ill. DL has had a cold for a few days, but she's also been being sick, and we're not sure why. She can't keep anything down and is getting a lot of discomfort in her stomach. I think a doctor's appointment is in order when we get back. I also phoned my mum's neighbours today, to ask them to keep an eye out for the flower delivery in case mum wasn't home. They're like my nan and grandad, and assumed the role ever since my true grand parents passed away when I was a kid. They took care of me when my mum had to work, and basically treated me as one of the family. So my nan answered the phone, and I could hardly get any sense out of her. She's in her eighties, and has been gradually deteriorating for a while, just with the general effects of old age, but this morning she didn't seem to know who I was, and when I tried to ascertain what was the matter, I got bits of sentences, and she could hardly speak. I asked her to go get my granddad, and he says she's been like it for a while, and the doctors don't seem to be doing much. So he's taring his hair out over the situation, and sadly it looks as though her health is declining faster than we thought.

The third and hopefully the final thing, is that I got a call this morning from guide dogs. This is how the conversation went, baring in mind I've been on the waiting list for a year and a half now:
"We have a dog in training, and there is you and also another woman who we think it would be suited too, so we'd like to come out and let you walk with it, and make a decision who we should give it too."
"That's fine, when were you thinking of coming?"
"Next Monday."
"Aahh, well the thing is, i'm going on holiday for a week, leaving today, then I'll be back for five days, and then I'm out of the country for a month."
"Aaahh well that settles things then, because that month would be when, if the dog is suitable, we would be training you with it."
Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit!!!!!!!!!!
So now I'm back on the motherfucking waiting list again! I can't believe it, I've been waiting this long and then they're ready to give me a dog when I'm in Africa! It really sucks, and to be honest, i'm gutted. I'm trying to think positively, this trip is the opportunity of a lifetime, and I'll still be on the list when I get back. He also told me that there are two dogs that have just started training that might be suitable, so I should call them as soon as I get back, and if they haven't already been assigned owners, they'll look at seeing how I fair with one of them. So now I'm hoping to God they're still available when I get back. It would be ideal to get one before I start uni again in September, it'll make life so much easier.

And so, after all that, I am now going to finish the last of the packing, so that we can get on the road to London, where we're staying until our flight leaves at something rediculous O'clock on Sunday morning.
See you in just over a week's time, when I'll hopefully have much more positive things to relate!

1 comment:

Sean said...

God ... I hope your mum recovers rapidly. That's both scary and ridiculous. I can't believe they don't have measures in place to protect staff - I mean, everyone's at risk when clients are that unstable! Hopefully they'll re-evaluate how they deal with situations like that.

I also know how distressing it is when your grandparents deteriorate. The best thing to do is to be patient, understanding and - in person - to respect that verbal communication isn't always possible and just show that you're there and that you care through your behaviour.

As for the dog thing, that just plain sucks - but at least they have two lined up.

Feel better - hope you've really enjoyed your time in Africa! [Seeing as you'll only read this once you get back]