Ever been run over by a steamroller?
It’s been a bit of a… a bit of a day? It’s been a lot of a day. I have rarely been as exhausted, emotionally and surprisingly physically too. Indeed, the idea of going into the respite centre myself for a week is highly appealing, and I think anyone able to see inside my head today would have been seriously concerned about the fact that I have access to both morphine and sedatives, not to mention a bottle of sherry in my cupboard (yes, I am teetotal!). But I seem to have survived intact .. so far at least.
The first source of perpetual anxiety is Dad. He is so determined not to go for respite that he is currently unable to bring himself to speak to me. He seems really quite ill, and it is hard to tell how much is his actual illness and how much is a deliberate ploy to a) try to weasel out of going and b) make me feel guilty and c) make me work ten times as hard to pay me back for putting him in there for the week. I have my suspicions it’s a bit of both, which makes it all the harder as you cannot call his bluff so easily. It’s had one good effect, I no longer feel quite so guilty for him going as the exhaustion combined with the irritation (nay, near anger!) at being emotionally blackmailed mean that I need this week of battery-recharging more than anything.
I found myself with a dilemma this morning, however. The respite is intended to give me some time with my children and I found myself not actually wanting to spend any time whatsoever with my eldest, in fact I found myself looking for ways to get rid of him too for a while. I think we have cracked it today, but yesterday I was mother to the teenager from Hell and things were looking bad at his school too. Those of you who know him will know how alien it is to his character to be determined to break up the family and be expelled from school. But God is good and sent him the migraine to end all migraines today, which resulted in him spending a couple of hours in the medical room (I was just getting into a much needed bath when they rang me and, not wanting to see him yet, I asked if they could keep him for just a little longer, explaining the circumstances… but omitting to mention that my bathwater was getting cold and so was I!) and then breaking down in my arms when I went to collect him. Teenage stuff, of course, but all wrapped up in worries not only about Grandad but about me and about what would happen when it’s all over. Textbook stuff really, trying to disrupt the relationships deliberately to preempt it all falling apart around him beyond his control. I don’t suppose we’ve heard the last of it, but several heartfelt conversations, and him starting to share some of his worries and allow himself to be comforted and reassured have definitely been a positive step forward… even if he doesn’t quite understand that the punishment given yesterday still has to be served!
The biggest headache this week has been Dad’s medication. More of that in another post.
The saving grace today was meeting R in the chemist. She is the most wonderful old lady I have ever met. She is soft and gentle, angel-like in voice, demeanour, appearance and attitude. She’s one of those people whose glow of loveliness seems to radiate out and touch your heart even before she speaks. Totally crippled with arthritis, but never grumbling. A lady who, when she says “I am praying for you every day”, you know she actually is, you can feel the prayers almost tangibly. Who better to meet when feeling world-weary?