I haven't seen her in almost 2 years. In those 2 years her health has deteriorated and she has become more frail. Amazingly enough, she is still sneaky and manipulative. I say that in an amused way more than anything. Part of her personality I didn't realize she even had until well into my adulthood, and even now into old age (hers, thank you very much!) I think it's become more pronounced.
Example - she lives with my brother whom I will call "brother." Brother had to travel on business and had his girlfriend stop by the house and spend time with my Mom, take her shopping and to run errands. Brother's GF asked Mom if people were calling and checking up on her (since Brother had arranged for people to do that) and she said "Oh yes, people have been calling. But I don't tell Brother that when he calls." And this statement was accompanied by a smirk when Brother's GF (who KNOWS how he worries about Mom) stared back at her in open-mouthed amazement. She was purposely making Brother feel guilty for being away! But somehow there was a disconnect when it came to admitting her behavior to Brother's GF, as if she would keep that secret from Brother.
Also, Mom wanted a pet. We talked about it on the phone. I suggested a cat because besides being a crazy cat lady and just liking cats (me, not her), a cat just made sense for her. She got a dog. And then she would complain about the dog. My question was "Mom, why did you get a dog? Why didn't you get a cat so you wouldn't have to worry about it chewing up your shoes (maybe just pooping in them) or needing to go outside every half hour?" Her answer - "Oh, Brother wanted the dog. He saw it on that Westminster Dog show thing on TV and thought this kind of dog would be a good dog to get." Oh. Didn't sound much like Brother, but I didn't question it. Until I mentioned it to Brother. We were on the phone but I swear smoke came out of his ears! "SHE wanted the dog! I still have the emails she was sending me at work about dogs and the elderly!!"
So, I bought a bed because there wasn't one in the room Mom will be staying in. I bought a hand held shower thing to attach to my shower. I bought a shower chair because I'm terrified she will fall in the shower. I already have a bath mat. I bought a grab bar to attach to the side of the tub in case she needs something to hold onto getting in and out. I bought a potty booster thing. I still need to buy bedding for the bed I bought. So not only am I broke, I'm a nervous wreck about this visit. She'll be flying with a nebulizer and will need a wheelchair to get through the airport. So many details.
But I'm wondering if more than anything else that I will have to deal with - trying to tell the truth from her colorization of it may be the hardest part!!!