A FICTIONAL LETTER FROM A CAREGIVER TO THEIR MOTHER,by A CAREGIVER ;(play version)
TEXT SHOULD BE READ BY A WOMAN OR MAN WITH A "SLAVIC" ACCENT.
THE READER'S FACE IS TO BE PROJECTED VIA VIDEO PROJECTION BACK SCREEN .BUT MAKE SURE IT IS "IN DISGUISE" WITH A FACE MASK OR DARK GLASSES OR BLURRY OR WHATEVER THE DIRECTOR RECOMMENDS. IT SHOULD LOOK VERY "HIDDEN", LIKE A NINJA ETC......AT DISCRETION OF THE DIRECTOR ,
AT THE cue............
( 7 ) "UNSPOKEN WORDS OF THE CLIENT",......
1 OR 7 "ACTORS" COME SLOWLY ONTO THE STAGE, TO SIT IN CIRCLES OF LIGHT:FIRST UNSPOKEN WORD.....
1-7 ELDERS, WEARING ALL RED CLOTHES, WALK SLOWLY ON STAGE, "NURSING" A PHYSICAL HANDICAP...KNEE PAIN, BACK PAIN, SHOULDER PAIN ETC..... THEY WALK TO AN OVERHEAD "CIRCLE" OF SOFT RED LIGHT AND SIT IN THE RED LIGHT. "BABY MUSIC " OR NURSERY RHYMES PLAY SOFTLY.
SECOND UNSPOKEN WORK: 1-7 ELDERS OR ACTORS,WEARING ALL ORANGE CLOTHES, WALK ONTO THE STAGE, USING A SIMPLE CANE. THEY WALK SLOWLY. NURSERY RHYMES PLAY. SHOULD BE VERY PEACEFULL BUT POIGNANT FEEL. THEY WALK TOWARD AN ORANGE CIRCLE OF LIGHT (DISCRETION OF DIRECTOR AS TO WHERE THESE 7 "CIRCLE OF LIGHT" ARE ON THE STAGE.
THIRD UNSPOKEN WORD: 1-7 ELDERS, MEN AND WOMEN, WEARING ALL YELLOW CLOTHES, WALK SLOWLY ON STAGE USING A 3 PRONGED CANE. THEY WALK TOWARD A YELLOW CIRCLE OF LIGHT AND SIT IN CHAIRS PROVIDED. CHAIRS ARE AT THE DISCRETION OF THE DIRECTOR BUT LAZY-BOY CHAIRS WOULD BE FABULOUS.THE ACTORS WOULD LIFT THEIR LEGS AND LAY BACK ON THE CHAIRS...THIS DEPENDS ON BUDJET AND THE SIZE OF THE STAGE.WOULD BE WONDERFULL IF EACH OF THE CHAIRS IN THE 7 CIRCLES OF LIGHT COULD CORRESPOND IN COLOR WITH THE CIRCLE OF LIGHT...I.E. IN RED CIRCLE. ALL RED LAZY BOY CHAIRS....
FOURTH UNSPOKEN WORD: 1-7 ELDERS,WEARING ALL GREEN CLOTHES, WALK ONTO THE STAGE USING A WALKER.LOWLY, NURSERY RHYMES PLAY SOFTLY. THEY MOVE TOWARD A GREEN CIRCLE OF LIGHT. THIS SHOULD TAKE AT LEAST 7 MINUTES FOR EACH TIME THE ELDERS COME ON STAGE......OR AT THE DISCRETION OF THE DIRECTOR.
FIFTH UNSPOKEN WORD: 1-7 ELDERS ,WEARING ALL BLUE CLOTHES, PUSH 3-7 WHEELCHAIRS ONTO THE STAGE INTO A CIRCLE OF LIGHT COLORED BLUE. NURSERY RHYMES PLAY. THEY SIT IN THEIR WHEELCHAIRS ONCE THEY ARRIVE AT THE CIRCLE OF BLUE LIGHT.
SIXTH UNSPOKEN WORD: 1-7 ELDERS ,WEARING ALL PURPLE CLOTHES, PUSH A >HOSPITAL BED ONTO THE STAGE TOWARD A CIRCLE OF PURPLE LIGHT. NURSERY RHYMES PLAY. THE ELDER GETS INTO THE BED ONCE THE BED IS SITUATED ON STAGE.
SEVENTH UNSPOKEN WORD: 1-7 ELDERS COME ONTO THE STAGE,WEARING ALL WHITE CLOTHES, HOLDING DOLLS WRAPPED AS INFANTS. THEY WALK TOWARD A CIRCLE OF WHITE LIGHT . NURSERY RHYMES PLAY.AT THE END OF THE PLAY, NURSERY RHYMES PLAY,7-70 LOVELY, HAPPY, PLAYFULL CHILDREN COME ONTO THE STAGE AND THE AUDIENCE IS ALSO INVITED ON STAGE TO EAT "CATERED" AND GREAT FOOD WITH THE ELDERS, SIT ON THEIR BED, TALK, GET ADVICE, PRAY WITH THEM AND RECEIVE A FREE "WISE GIFT"(discretion of director as to what this is) FROM THE ELDER TO EACH CHILD AND EACH AUDIENCE MEMBER.
LIGHTING: LIGHT SHOULD COME FROM DIRECTLY ABOVE...AND MAKE CIRCLES THAT CAN TOUCH ....CAN BE IN ANY ORDER OR PLACE ON STAGE.
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A FICTONAL LETTER FROM A CARETAKER TO THEIR MOTHER,by A Caregiver
The First Unspoken Thought of The Client: "I WANT TO GO HOME!"
Dear Mummie, A quick letter home. Am still at the same job with Mr._____. He's now 94 and we are still in that midwest city. Actually it is a rich area outside in the suburbs.My client is a pretty interesting person; he was an engineer but his tumor took away the part of the brain that does math so now I guess you could say that he isn't an engineer anymore.That makes my job pretty simple because he's not too demanding. As far as the problems that I was having in my building where I live,don't worry Mummie, at least where I work they accept me or else this family is hiding their prejudice well. The bottom line is that I get paid the same as everybody else who works here and that's alot! ( We compare notes.My total salary is getting close to three figures with my other "job".) So i'm not upset when I pull up in my car at 10pm and the neighbors who pass me seem upset to see a person of color in their hood! It's sad,Mummie, when I first came here to the states, I noticed strange looks.That would depress anyone and I guess I act upbeat now so I can appear like it doesn't bother me. Deep down , this isnt so easy. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The Second Unspoken Thought of The Client:"THEY ALL IGNORE ME AND TALK WITH EACH OTHER LIKE I'M NOT HERE!"
But really, I'm not the poor one, I'm not the suffering one, these americans are! As you know this is my 6th private case and I've seen it all; from dimentia,to alzheimers, to cancer, to strokes, to accident brain injuries, to broken hips, to m.s. And my clients either have insurance policies or financial means to be taken care of at home.Otherwise it's the poor house , the nursing home, a slow death in a room with other living corpses!So I come to their house and what I provide is company.In exchange for all of their savings! Mummie, America really sucks; they all have money but none of them have fun or time for themselves or smiles or a way to personally take care of their old and sick parents.That's why I'm here almost every night during the week. Days at my apartment,I watch TV, sit in my hot tub, and hang outwith my friends.That's what I tell this client but actually I work full time for another old person but I can't call it work because as he sleeps, I read, lay in the sun, talk on the phone and eat. Nights I'm at what I call "work"!!! Of course I'm exhausted from being locked up with the other case all day but I sleep all night here anyway. Not bad, right mommie?++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The Third Unspoken Thought of The Client:"I HAVEN'T HAD A BOWEL MOVEMENT IN FOUR DAYS AND NOBODY HAS NOTICED.THE PAIN IS KILLING ME!"
BecauseI've been with this one for over seven years, I've gotten to not only know him well but I'm paid really a big amount of $(you would be proud of me because , as I said before, we are talking 6 figures here Mummie adding up the two jobs)justto sleep all night in the same room with his loud snoring.I say sleep but half the time I'm on my cell phone to ________,or snoring myself and I'm supposed to be checking his cathedra,giving him water,feeding him a snack,turning him (we call it the "pancake" and see how fast we can do it; I won last month's contest which we've been doing for years now, and I flipped him in just 10 seconds.Of course he moaned and that was pretty bad, but I wasn't going to lose that month's bet which put another 20 bucks in my pocket!This was my first time to win!).Back to the things I'm supposed to do: massage his back if heseems too uncomfortable, make sure he isn't too hot or cold and other very easy things that they could do if they were not so lazy and selfish.Do I do any of it? Sure if i'm being watched.Don't these people know that they are being ripped off? When the 7 of us from the agency meet at The Lion's Inn for a drink, we laugh behind their backs.Where else can you get paid this much to sleep?We also do little plays for each other, to imitate Mr. S and Mrs. J etc...how they eat or snore and many other funny things they do because they can't control their muscles or arms. It is so funny and we laugh and laugh.It helps let off steam and we can't really laugh in front of them when it happens.Our clients are very entertaining, right? (Mummie, I feel funny telling you this but there is nobody I can talk to about some of the people I work with. Some are real nasty because they treat their memory problem clients like boyfriends or girlfriends, if you know what I mean? I almost get sick when they talk about it but I dont say anything. And you should see how they rip off their client's C.D.'s and do other tricks in the banks to get their client's life savings. I feel better after telling you but keep this quiet, OK?)
Back to money:I use my salary to pay off credit cards, pay the mortgage on my home back in our village; I pay for my neice's education;I pay off my 58 inch flat screen TV; and last but not least I pay for my high electric bills because I sit in that **# hot tub every day before I come here and that really eats the money.( Speaking of money, I have a few scams we use here in the states:
1.When the TV says it might rain, snow, sleet, flood, or if you can fake a cough, cold, sore throat or the flu, then either cal in and say you can't make it that day, but if you are there for at least two hours, say you saw on TV very dangerous conditions in the weather and you must leave immediately or better yet, say you have to go to the ER because your throat hurts so bad.Do this ONLY if you know you will be paid a full day's work. Remember the people you are taking care of grew up with fear and are so naive that they will fall for it. And are so addicted to you and your "good Care" that they will do ANYTHING to keep you.
2. Try this! Fake a phone call to your job by having a friend call you after you've been there an hour.Tell your client that your husband, friend, mother wife, child or nephew(dogs work too) need to be picked up at an airport, or school or hospital. It works.Act apologetic and say, should I go? Ask at least three times.They ALWAYS say, you go, I will be ok.
3. If the winter is very cold or summer very hot, hint that you can't pay your heat or air conditioning bill that month because it is so &*^% high. Swearing like that helps. Do it for 4 days and believe me you will get a raise that week.
The Fourth Unspoken Thought of The Client:"MY BACK ACKES.WHY DON'T THEY TURN ME.I HAVEN'T BEEN MOVED IN 6 HOURS.!"
4.Rent is the best one yet and biggest fish to catch, pulling on their heart strings. Say that you have paid a very high rent for years and years, complain the first of every month city but they dont know that. My friend uses this one also and is the proud owner of three duplexes now which were left him in his client's will. This works especially if there is no family to inherit anything and try to get those kinds of clients. I think I may walk away with a house on this one. At least I'm working on it!
5. To get a raise, TALK ABOUT MONEY...how expensive things are, food, gas to drive to work, etc. They get all uptight and think, hmmm maybe he needs more money. Isnt that clever? It works and all my friends use this technique also. Of course none of this works if there is a manager or lawyer smart enough to be in charge of the situation, or dumb enough to be cheated out of their inheritance by hiring me, I guess you could say!>You always ask me, am I too tired or working too much? Something is wrong in this equation ,Mummie,because i'm not doing that much.What I do is SMILKE ALOT AND TALK SOFTLY AND LOOK CONCERNED. A hustle I agree, but it is a good one.
The Fifth Unspoken Thought of The Client:"I'VE BEEN IN THESE DEPENDS FOR FIVE HOURS. PLEASE CHANGE ME.MY BEDSORES STING!"
You asked last letter what I really do? I'm supposed to do alot of
things but I chart that I do them. Fake it!Looking busy is the best game. But my REAL JOB is dealing with the family and they can drive you crazy. Like I said when I saw you last summer,the daughter's a neurotic spy, watching every move I make.She sneaks down the stairs to see if i'm doing my job and so far hasn't suspected a thing.Until recently. One night a month ago,at 2am,( the time i'm supposed to turn and hydrate him) I felt something near the recliner where I was snoring away and there the old bat was at her father's bedside,arranging his pillow and giving him water.Of course I jumped right up and appeared concerned like I was about to do it that minute.I act as if her lack of trust is hard to take to make her feel guilty but I dont care because I will be retired and well off, long before "old prune face", the name we call her. And I wont be paranoid or bitter. She is ending up a basket case and I'm the smiling happy camper!!!With my other patient I've also learned the art of intimidation and I make him feel guilty if he finds me making a mistake. But my time might be running out at this job because she might be suspecting something. In fact she caught me again, snoring at the wrong time, and when I found her standing over by her father having silently come down stairs, I ran the old bat daughter out of the room ,screaming and yelling at her. A few days later, I again acted upset that she didnt "trust" me and I yelled at her and told her how great I was, what a good job I do and made her feel that i'm great, and that she realy, really needs me.Ha , ha. What a trick!!! That angry finger pointing and yelling at them is a great technique. Why doens't she fire me??? I think she must have her head in the sand!!!What a wimp.I laugh every payday because I get all her inheritance and she ends up not only crazy but poor!Me, I'm rich and I've gotten a free education too. Because all of my clients have been professionals and smart, and I ask them tons of questions, as a result I've learned law, real estate, the stock market,world literature, how to take care of a house and thousands of other usefull things. Just for fun I tested out on a graduate school level and passed! Isn't that amazing and I oly went to high school back home. And you should see my library! It's filled with all of these scholarly books they have given me over the years which I actually study. This is another one of the best kept secrets of this job! Act like a dummie, ask lots of questions, get an education and get paid tons while you are doing it!On the other hand my boss is so worried all the time I think she is losing her mind from worry and the responsibility .There goes her EXPENSIVE university education and three degrees!+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The Sixth Unspoken Thought of The Client:"I HOPE MY GRANDSON NOTICES THE BRUISES ON MY ARMS AND BACK.THAT ONE AIDE HITS ME WHEN I WET THE BED TOO MUCH!"
Sure, I admit that the families have their problems and this is hard on them....people in their home day after day after year. .....The horror stories are pretty amazing, for example, one employer got badly ripped off by a greedy caretaker I know who got into their dimented mother's locked office and stole tons of $$$$.Sure, all of us take small stuff around the house,secretly do laundry at 2am in their private washer which actually says for private use only!!!, eat as much food as we can stuff in our mouths when they aren't >looking,smoke on their porch eventhough the old man has emphesema, hide silverware in our pockets when we leave in the morning, and swallow meds--especially our client's controlled substances.The one guy's meds included an anxiety pill that I really wanted and I told the old bag I spilled the two that he was supposed to have. They are $10 apiece and I really needed to relax that day and of course she said,"Oh what a shame.Here's two more ,"which she got from the locked room upstairs.She didn't suspect a thing!!!I guess the thrill of the forbidden is part of this job description. Americans are so stupid Mummie. They are so innocent and we are milking them dry, right under their noses at a time when they need us so badly that we end up having all the power, we have all the control, we win in this no contest game of life over death. Mummie, I can't say too much more---I've got to go to Circuit City and get a new DVD PLAYER.Mine is jammed. By the way,the money that I'm sending you this month is higher because of the holiday bonus they gave me.Pretty soon I will be able to own the whole world if I keep making money like this!!! When they say,"You do good work,"I'm sure not going to correct them on that one!!!!
OK Mummie,see you soon.Can't wait to swim in the ocean again and lay on that warm beach sand.
P.S.I think it is called offshore laundry $ ,not sure what it really is,but C____told me to send you a big check this month and you give it to N____my business partner there, so he can use it as a down payment for the restaurant and spa that we will open next January in S.G. P.P.S. Tell R their technique worked! N flirted with her client as he suggested, kept the family away by saying he ws sleeping, in >>>a coma etc, wheeled him to the bank when the bank manager was on vacation and got 5 million put into HER account!!! She's back there now and has just built that condo in S.WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The Seventh Unspoken Thought of The Client:"HELP! I'M SCARED AND LONELY. AND I'M DYING!"
SOLUTION:PRAYER OF ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI
Lord,make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.Where there is injury, let me sow pardon.Where there is friction, let me sow union.Where there is error, let me sow truth.Where there is doubt, let me sow faith.Where there is despair, let me sow hope.Where there is darkness, let me sow light.Where there is sadness, let me sow joy.
O Divine Master,grant that i may not so much seek to be consoled as to console,to be understood as to understand,to be loved as to love.For it is in giving that we receive.It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.It is in dying that we are born to eternal life.THE END