Disability Service Commiseration

‘What I don’t understand,’ I said, putting my glass back on the bar, ‘is how this has become my problem.’

‘She’s still your mum,’ Ruby frowned at me over an untouched beer.

‘Right, I guess,’ I rolled my eyes. ‘But she’s made her feelings pretty clear.’

‘You know that’s not fair,’ she said quietly. ‘She’s not herself.’

‘If the doctors are right, then she’s never going to be herself again,’ I shrugged. ‘So the way I see it, my mum already died, months ago.’

She slapped me on the arm with a shocked expression. ‘Don’t say that!’

‘It’s true!’ I huffed. ‘We tried to set her up with some nice SDA housing within driving distance to Adelaide so she’d be looked after and close to home, and look where that got us: drinking by ourselves at two o’clock on a Tuesday.’

I took a swig to make my point, and Ruby averted her eyes.

‘So are you going to help me or not?’

‘I honestly don’t know what else there is to do,’ I said, wiping my chin and gesturing to the barman with my empty glass. ‘I’m open to suggestions, but don’t count on any optimism from this side of the room.’

‘Maybe we just need to find her the right disability service provider,’ Ruby suggested. ‘A friendly face that isn’t one of us.’

‘I wonder if she’d be faster or slower to yell at a stranger?’ I mused out loud.

‘They just have to give her the options, help her see what she’s missing out on,’ Ruby continued, ignoring me.

‘Well, like I said,’ I got up, throwing a note onto the bar before I left. ‘I’m all out of optimism.’

‘It’s okay to be hurt, you know,’ Ruby called out to me.

‘Who says I’m hurt?’ I asked, stopping at the door.

‘The hundred dollar note you just put down for two beers was a clue.’



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