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Thread: Still here

  1. #1
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Norwich, UK
    Posts
    143

    Still here

    Hi everyone,

    Just to let you know, I'm still here and my best friend is still kicking. Well, not kicking exactly. Blinking might be more accurate.

    She can just about turn her head these days, but not much. Lot's of neck pain and muscle soreness.

    Our relationship is still contentious. We have the occasional good day, but most of the time she doesn't think I'm doing enough as a friend, and most of the time I don't know what more I can do, what more I can sacrifice for her.

    I'm no longer allowed to mention how much I'd like to be on the ocean in a yacht during this heatwave, or how one day I'll have my own boat.

    My friend's mum has stabilised a bit, is getting Chemo for her lung cancer. Not sure which is going to kick the bucket first.

    Her 2 adult kids, who promised to visit 3 times a week, are down to 1 or 2 visits a week most weeks. I'm starting to resent her family a little, actually. So much of her care burden rests on my shoulders, and they all just get on with their lives, interrupting it once or twice a week, or less, for a couple hours to come and visit.

    Her daughter is getting married and buying a new house with her fiancÚ. So all of their spare time goes into those projects, plus her fiancÚ is studying to be a solicitor and is always elbow deep in books and studying for his exams. My friend's son has a new job, with not always the most sociable hours, and puts seeing his girlfriend above visiting his mum.

    When all of THIS is said and done, when my friend is beyond my care and no longer needs my support, I am going to put me first for a few years. Going to make a bucket load of money, buy a yacht, sail around England and spend time with my 2 kids - whom I've only seen 2 or 3 times this entire year. I'm going to get fit, travel and live life to the max. If I want to do it, I'm going to do it. Not going to get tangled in another relationship for at least 5 to 10 years, or longer - may never fall in love again. I'm going to reconnect with my many friends and activities I used to do - photography, archery, sailing, writing. I'm not a selfish person by nature, but I'm not ever going to sacrifice myself like this again for someone.

    Pen
    Hanging in there, one day at a time.

  2. #2
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Posts
    29
    Hi Penwiggle,

    Lovely to see you back. It is good to have plans and to recognise that there will be a life after caring. Everything will be different, you will be different and you will only know how you have changed once you have the freedom to please yourself.

    I really appreciate this site as a place to rant and vent all one's frustrations. I certainly sympathise with the lack of visits and understanding about the toll this illness can place. Maybe the refusal to face reality is a coping strategy. I think back to my own insensitivity when my mother was living with my grandmother's dementia; so much easier to breeze in and be cheerful for an hour or so and never ask questions.

    No matter how hard you are finding things please remember you have a choice. We can all choose to walk away no matter how unthinkable it may seem. The fact of my making that choice saw me through many dark moments.

    I have loved your posts.
    My warmest wishes,
    Susan

  3. #3
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Norwich, UK
    Posts
    143
    Hi Susan,

    Thank you. I, perhaps unfortunately, tend to post when I'm angry. Strong emotions bring out the writer in me. LOL

    Also, at night. I'm not at my best when tired, and tend to rant and vent then. But now, in the light of afternoon, all is well with the world. My housemate and I are on polite speaking terms, and I offered to hang out with her today. I'm not into the show her and her carer are watching, so not going to join them now. But if they put a film on later.

    And this is my slight beef with her. She says I don't hang out, that I hide in my room and avoid her. But from my perspective, she has a handful of carers that spend 24/7 with her, and for each carer, she has a different series she watches with them. It's American Horror Story at the moment, yesterday was Stanger Things, another carer it's Game of Thrones. If I'm into the show they are watching, and don't have other demands on my time, I'll hang with them and watch the show. But I'm not going to go in and watch American Horror Story 1/2 way through a series (season), not really enjoying the show or know what's going on. (The first season of the show was awesome btw, but it lost me after that.)

    So I always tell her, if she's watching something I'd enjoy, let me know, and I'll be there. What winds me up is when I walk into her room (her room was originally the living room, so one has to go through it to get to the kitchen, and she's watching something I'd like to watch with her, but they are already an hour into it. If she'd told me, I'd drop what I was doing and been there when it started.

    She complains that I don't communicate with her, but it's a two-way street here.

    Anyway. None of this is likely to change much. Right now, I'm doing a final edit to my novel, hoping the agent I sent a sample to the other week is interested in reading more. I've got to have a source of income lined up, or already working, before she dies. The day she dies my income support and carer's allowance will stop, and I'll be looking for a good doorway to sleep under.

    Pen
    Hanging in there, one day at a time.

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