Janis Stovall told me she visited with my mother, and that my mother repeatedly asked her for a cigarette. I tried to explain to her that that was impossible, because my mother hated smoking, but she was adamant. I decided to email her a photo of my mom so she could tell me if she was interviewing the right person. I sent her this photo in an email with the subject line “mom.”:

Kathleen Gagne

My sister took this photo of mom showing off the new phone I had gotten her.

Janis emailed me this reply at 3:09 PM:

She looks really good in this pic.

She didn’t indicate whether my mom was, in fact, the person she had seen who was asking her for a cigarette! I replied at 3:18 PM to say:

Yes, and that photo was taken on October 26th, 2011 … only about 4 months ago.

Janis replied to me at 7:43 AM on March 6th, the next morning. She wrote:

Unbelievable…. I am on my way to see her at 11:00 today and meeting a family member there.

I replied to her at 8:24 AM and said:

By “a family member” I assume you mean my little sister.

Did you receive the four or five emails I sent you last night detailing some of my mother’s history? I am really hoping you get a chance to review those prior to visiting her today.

Please do call me as soon as you can after meeting with my mom today. I’m very much interested in your opinion of the situation and to discover what happened the last time you visited. My sister said that the woman with whom my mother shares a bedroom is a smoker and thinks possibly this other woman was the one who was begging you for a cigarette. (I just find it very hard to believe my mother would have been asking to smoke; I suppose that could have been the dementia talking.)

Thank you sincerely,