Sunday, 18 May 2008

Twiddling my thumbs in anticipation of an arthritic future

Well here I am, waiting for people to check their inboxes and then (hopefully) sign up to join this online group I just started - COPE: Caring for Our Parents and Elders. Having just become a caregiver for my father, it seemed like something to do.

Half the people I know who are my age are also going through the same responsibilities, stresses, fears ... we talk on the phone once in a while and keep meaning to meet over coffee, but there never seems to be time, or else our schedules always clash. So I figured an e-group might be the next way to reach out and connect, and also share ideas and resources. Anyone out there in the same situation, feel free to join - it's at

It's been a rough weekend for me. Dad was doing "okay" so I spent most of Friday sleeping. I find sleeping is about the best escape from "all this" (i.e. the whole dad-being-ill-and-I-am-taking-care-of-it-all thing). The other day I realised that my favourite part of the day was at night when I was asleep .. unconscious and oblivious to the world. Not a great attitude to have, which is partly why I decided I needed to connect with others in the same boat. Sadly, no one else has joined the group yet, so while I'm waiting, I'm blogging here, basically talking to myself. Nothing new about THAT! LOL

Saturday I went from sleepy to angry. I was just ANGRY all day long. At the situation. At my parents for being sick and needy and old. At my siblings for not being here for the horrible bits. At myself for not being strong enough. At Prince Caspian (the movie) for being released at a time when I just can't manage to get away to the cinemas. At my husband for not being here to support me (although in his defence I should say that his absence is largely because he does not exist.) Angry at the world in general, and I could not figure out "a healthy way to express one's anger" as all the self-help books talk about, so ended up just smoking a lot of cigarettes, eating a bunch of chocolates, and .. to be honest, I can't remember what else I did yesterday. Oh yes, moved some furniture around. That always makes me feel good. And eventually the anger fizzled out.

And today .. today I'm just getting on with it. Wondering what to make for dinner that will be healthy and tasty for Dad yet not include ingredients that give my Mom allergic reactions .. sigh .. a vague feeling of dread for whatever lies ahead -- and there is sure to be Something ahead -- and the beginning of a spaced-out feeling as my mind decides it's time to dissociate from all this and think happy thoughts about Professor Snape instead.

So a quick trip to Hogwarts before I start rummaging for groceries .. and a promise that I will take time out for me -- and this blog -- on a regular basis again.

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