The Cold-Plate Supper

Kristin
Sometimes Lewy Body can be funny and interesting. Mary has the version of REM sleep disorder  in which the caree acts out the dream after waking, rather than during REM.

Today I returned home at 3:30 after an hour's visit with a neighbor. Mary was resting on the couch, but had obviously been very busy. She told me that she had just returned from the store (she hasn't driven in 2 years) with some macaroni and potato salads, and cold cuts, as she was planning on having a cold plate supper. Her parents were coming up (they've been dead for years), the "kids" were coming over (they weren't - they have a farm and stable to attend to) and we were all going to have this supper.

The table was laid out for six, all very formal withthe good plates,  butter knives, cloth napkins, a lazy susan loaded with appetizers (the stale, limp, saltless potato chips Mary loves) and some mayo to dip them in. She had placed two pounds of frozen peas in a pot, and pared three huge russets, cut them up and put them in a pot. She was just waiting for me to turn the gas on (it's shut off when no one is here). She had taken out a stack of Stouffer's frozen dinners (her nightly choice for dinner) and set them on the counter; they were apparently the main courses.

I tried to talk her out of making dinner for six, but no luck. She was like a robot. Just shuffling here and there, getting this dinner ready, still in a dream state. I did insist the Stouffer's go back n the freezer. She wanted to cook them all, and I asked what she would do with them if no one came to her supper. "Just refreeze them."  Not. At about 5 she began cooking the potatoes and peas. I dished up a bowl for myself while they were still recognizable as peas, and she let the rest cook for a l-o-n-g time. Eventually, she took out a spaghetti dinner for herself and asked me how to get the pasta out. I said to just cook it and toss it later. Okay. When it was done:

"Okay, Mary, I've taken out the spaghetti and you can put your potatoes in with the meatballs."

"Did you save any spaghetti for me?"

"You said you wanted to throw it out. I set it aside ."

"I don't want the potatoes; I want the spaghetti."

"Okay, I've put the spaghetti back in with the meatballs."

Mary proceeded to take the container and scrape the spaghetti into the garbage. She decided to have potatoes and peas, and we finished our meal. At this point, she seemed to have come out of the dream state, and to realize no one was coming to her "cold plate supper." She seemed not the least disappointed and had probably forgotten what the whole thing was about, anyway. She returned all the plates and utensils to their places and went back to her couch (which I had just finished making up, having had to change the sheets, towels and pads on it twice today).

Just another fun day in the twilight zone.

Join our mailing list

Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter that includes caregiving tips, news, support and more.