Alone at Christmas

CarolStarred Page By Carol, 28th Nov 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Short Stories

Christmas day is like any other day to Daisy, she is housebound with neither the will nor the strength to go out any more. At the age of 82, her life has become really hard to cope with.

Alone at Christmas

Daisy shuffled in her armchair to make herself more comfortable. As far as she was concerned, those carers didn't do their job properly. They didn't let her sit in her comfortable loose nightie all day, they made her wear clothes, They kept nagging her about not drinking enough fluid, but didn't they realise it was a long walk, at least ten steps into the toilet from the front room? If she kept drinking, she would have to get up and walk, leaning heavily on her zimmer frame, into the bathroom.

Daisy's idea of a good day was to get up and be washed and dressed by her carers, then when they settled her in front of the tv, she searched around all the channels so she could watch quiz programmes. Sometimes she knew the answers, but the contestants didn't, so she knew she was not stupid.

Amy didn't agree with that, and it had caused quite a few words between them. Amy had told her she should not be sitting down all day, she should be making an effort to walk with her zimmer, she had even asked the carers to serve Daisy's dinner on the kitchen table, and not on her trolley in the front room. Amy expected her to walk at least six steps into the kitchen of her tiny bungalow, and Daisy was furious. She told her to go in no uncertain terms, and told the carers they must not listen to Amy, she was pushing her Aunt too much, and even though they shook their heads at her in disbelief, they did as she said, so Daisy was pleased, she had won that war.

And now it was Christmas

Every year until now, Daisy had spent Christmas with Amy and her family. Gradually over the years, she had lost touch with her own, George had died over ten years ago, there had been no children, and since then everyone had drifted away except Amy. But she had told her she didn't want to go there this year, not even if they took her in a wheelchair.

Once Amy had taken her out in the car, they had joined weightwatchers , and walked their dogs together, but as Daisy developed aches and pains that come with advancing years, she found sitting still didn't hurt, whereas getting out of a chair and walking, did, and no matter how often Amy had patiently explained it was stiffness, and could only be cured by walking more, Daisy remained stubborn, and refused to walk. For Daisy her own home had become a challenge, she had become a recluse, and was happy to be left alone. The carer had taken her microwave meal of pasta bake out of the freezer, and would call in at lunch time to cook it for her. Daisy did expect her by twelve thirty at the latest, and if she was late she would hear about it.

Amy

Amy had done her best to encourage aunt Daisy to keep mobile, so had her doctor, and even a physiotherapist had worked with her, but it was clear that Daisy was having none of it. She told Amy that she had been an only child, and her parents had waited on her, and she wanted all that again.

She had given up on life since her beloved George had died, she used to be a great home maker, an excellent cook, she loved wearing nice clothes, and being taken out. But the void had been too hard to fill, she had allowed Amy to encourage her for a while, but it didn't last. Then when her elderly dog had to be put to sleep, she became even less interested in life. She neglected herself in every way, so Amy had arranged for the carers to come, but Daisy didn't like any of them.

She had been suffering from anxiety for a long time, and the tablets didn't seem to help her much, she was a shadow of the woman that Amy remembered, and she didn't know what else to do to help her. She visited as often as she could, did her housework and food shopping, but deep down she knew that Daisy was just barely existing, so she took all the harsh words and rebuffs, because she knew her aunt was an unhappy woman.

Christmas Day

Christmas day had arrived. Daisy had a few cards from the family, she had just left them on the side, but Amy had stood them on the mantle piece for her. She had given Amy some money to spend on the family, that was her part done she felt, Christmas was just a nuisance to her.

And then she started to watch a film, it was all about an old lady who was on her own at Christmas, and although she didn't like to admit it, she saw herself, a grumpy stubborn person, who felt that since she had lost her George, the whole world was against her. The old lady in the film didn't have an Amy to put up with her, she didn't have carers either, she had no-one, and one day they found her dead in her chair, three months later, which made Daisy think, maybe her own life was not so bad.

She stretched her hand over towards the telephone, and quickly dialled Amy's number, she might be cooking her Christmas dinner right now.
But it was Tony who answered the telephone.
" Hello Aunt Daisy, Amy is just on her way to you now, she's made you a special home made Christmas dinner, no microwave meals today"

She heard the car

Daisy heard her car in the drive, and forgetting herself for a moment, the zimmer was out in the kitchen, she walked stiffly to the front door. She opened it before Amy could even put her key in the lock.

Amy stared at her stupefied, as she leaned panting against the wall.
"Aunt Daisy, where is your zimmer, you might fall..."
" I won't, said Daisy fimly , I'm having a good day today As I feel so much better, perhaps it would be nice to come to your house for dinner."
"Oh but I haven't got Tony or the wheelchair."
" Never mind all that, if I can lean on your arm, and we take it slowly, I won't need a wheelchair."

Amy's eyes glistened with tears of joy, her stubborn aunt Daisy had finally listened to her, and wouldn't be on her own this Christmas. What a happy day it would be for everyone today.
My thanks to Wikipedia for the images, and Youtube for the video

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Tags

Alone, Carers, Christmas, Christmas Dinner, Family, Festivities, Fun, Grumpy Carers, Too Much, Zimmer

Meet the author

author avatar Carol
I am a proud mother and grandmother, and an author. I have had 7 books published. My hobbies are walking, swimming, and playing badminton. I try to raise more awareness of autism with my writing.

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Comments

author avatar Carol
28th Nov 2015 (#)

thanks very the very quick moderation and star Mark

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author avatar Deepizzaguy
29th Nov 2015 (#)

Thank you for sharing this story about Christmas. I know the good and sad stories about the holidays from people who have lost their loved ones.

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author avatar Carol
29th Nov 2015 (#)

Thanks for visiting my page Deepizzaguy

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author avatar Deepizzaguy
30th Nov 2015 (#)

You are welcome.

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author avatar Stella Mitchell
7th Dec 2015 (#)

I am so sorry to be so late in commenting dear Carol , but it is always such a busy month or so for me ...anyway , I have taken the time , just for you , and I am so glad I did .
This is a lovely story , and I am happy that Aunt Daisy made the right decision in the end and they all had a good Christmas .
God bless you and your family this Christmas my friend
With love from Stella ><

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author avatar Carol
7th Dec 2015 (#)

Thanks so much Stella, have a wonderful Christmas too. xxx

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author avatar Retired
24th Jul 2018 (#)

Lovely story of courage and hope for the holidays...as a caregiver myself in a nursing facility, I could feel Daisy's depression and feeling like she just wanted to give up. Excellently written.

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author avatar Carol
24th Jul 2018 (#)

Thanks Lifeisgood

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