Chapter 5

Dean holed himself up in the central office again. He hadn't mentioned Tilly's usage of her exam results again for fear of pressurising her.

“Compost heaps don't pressurise, Dean.” He told himself. “Just sit and ferment.”

Staff Discussion. March 5. GRACE MILLER.

Community Psychiatric Nurse David Pearson originally suggested a loosening of Grace's aftercare. He proposed that we leave the ball in Grace's court, with the full and complete understanding that she can call, or come into the hospital at any time. He pointed out that her progress had been remarkable, and had continued to be so after her discharge.
Even with these truths presented to me (Marie Fallon) I felt it was too soon for this approach.

(Personal Note – Marie - : I'm not quite sure why I'm holding off. David is perfectly correct, Grace has almost totally recovered. I can only put it down to myself having never dealt with a non-stereotypical family, parents/spouses/children.
N.B!! This is NOT a criticism, nor an expressed concern regarding the Miller family. It is merely a note to explain that I've never had the opportunity to deal with aftercare involving a family made up of five adult siblings. It's probably more to help me than Grace!!)
Mr. Pearson went on to affirm that the telephone conversations we'd had with Grace and her family verified and reinforced their support for Grace, as did the visits where Dave had met most of the family (Rosemary for an hour and a half).

He described Lynne as 'beautifully elegant, very communicative and efficient, polite and eloquent'.

Ben was described as 'loud and defensive', not offering to move four heavy bags of soil so Mr. Pearson could get in the greenhouse to speak to him properly. Despite this, he'd expressed an understanding that his sister, Grace, had been ill.

David described Rosemary as 'timid, bespectacled, and quite self conscious about her voice, causing her to mumble. (speech impediments mentioned earlier). She expressed much gratitude over Grace's treatment and recovery and thanked Dave over and over for getting Grace home safely and well. She was very eager to show Dave many pictures and pencil sketches done by Grace and was obviously very proud of her sister.

Mr. Pearson hadn't met Mark, but evidence of his presence was there during his visit where he spoke at length with Rosemary. David noticed, and accidentally knocked over, a full ashtray and also noticed four empty beer cans on the floor by the chair. Rosemary had tutted loudly in disapproval and disposed of the untidiness.

Mr. Pearson's overall opinion was one of mature and sensible support between the family members. He also passed a light comment about not being able to lose any of them because they were all 'well stamped', referring to a strong family resemblance.

Compromise reached. As well as Grace's outpatient's Appointments, telephone reassurance would still be kept up on our part for another three weeks. This is providing Grace's condition continued to improve as it is now.
(OH take note!! Dave Pearson's conclusions regarding our compromise include calling me (Marie) a nosey biddy!!)

Dean laughed to himself and rubbed his eyes. How could she have not been a nosey biddy? He would have been exactly the same in the circumstances. Marie's belief in the importance of family support had reflected quite strongly in her star junior. He knew what must have been bugging Marie at the time. This now, very supportive family had barely got a mention during Grace's initial hospitalization. It just didn't 'feel right'. Even with all the awareness and provisions for an unconventional family structure, something just wasn't clicking.
The word 'evasion' sprang to Dean's mind. Was one of the Miller siblings ill, or in trouble, and didn't want the doctors or authorities to find out? Illness and Mark wouldn't be an ideal suit. Grace's mental illness could be seen as something to be ashamed of to Ben, given his young years, or even the super professional Lynne.

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