Tuesday, October 2, 2012

I wished I had gotten help sooner

You know how some blogs have a day where they just post pictures? Well this isn't one of those days, nor is it one of those blogs. This one is all words. As soon as I am done here - I hope to go take a short nap.
I will admit, I have had a few difficult years here lately. Some of the early stress was self-induced from trying to fit my business into a place where it really didn't fit. I worked long, hard hours at it, but then I had to face facts. Fact facing took another 6 months. But boy, when I stopped, the relief was palpable. Whew!

If you read my blog - then you may have read this post:What day is it? That was back in mid July. Since that time, my mother has been diagnosed with Chronic Myelo Monostatic Leukemia - also known as MDS. MDS is a pre-leukemia and can be sent into remission - with some effort. It helps to have some things in your corner - a semblance of physical strength, an awareness of what your body is capable of, as well as other intangibles. My mother has *nothing* to bring to this fight. And yet my cousin and I agree - she is the woman with nine lives. We don't know how she does it. To date, my mom has had chemo 10 times, been transfused 8 times, and been to the hospital 2 times. This I can deal with. There is a plan, there is professional help, there is a treatment. 

What I can't deal with, is having to be her parent. It is like being a parent to an ornery child/teenager. There is constant wrangling - to try and get her to eat better, to exercise, to not go up and down the stairs alone, to keep her help button around her neck, to keep the phone with her when she moves around the house. This is exhausting. She prides herself on being stubborn. Right, sure ... Better traits to emulate: being cooperative, and agreeable, helpful.

Other stresses in Pennsylvania - Jennifer's mom, Mary Lee - has had to move from one assisted living facility (too expensive) to another - which is a very difficult transition for an Alzheimer's patient, and Jennifer's dear niece, Sarah dies suddenly at age 26. We are devastated. 
The day we memorialized Sarah - I called my mom at lunch time, to make sure she had eaten. No, she hadn't. Please at least go get a yogurt. She did. And then she fell. 3 hours later when I went back to her house, where was she? On the step into the family room, crying and calling out - because she couldn't get up to a standing position - and couldn't call for help - because she refuses to wear the help button or carry the phone with her. I am ... speechless.

Meanwhile, at home, my daughter is getting ready to go off to college - and I am not able to spend any. quality. time. with. her. because I am up in Pennsylvania 3 or 4 days out of every week. She IS leaving - do I know what I am going to do without her? No.

Before I know it, it is September. I am not sleeping, I am exhausted, unhappy, blowing up at nothing, crying at the drop of a hat. I need help. I don't want to talk about any of it anymore, because it feels like bile in my throat. I haven't felt this helpless or 'out of it' since my daughter Callie died. This alone is a revelation. I feel fragile. (Go ahead - say it like they say it on "The Christmas Story" - at least it will sound funny!) I need happy pills and sleeping pills because I feel like I am losing it.
Where is my husband in all of this? Staying below the radar, poor guy - at least he makes me happy - but I am sure he wants to just fix this and make. it. go. away.

My daughter has gone off to college. I am surviving this so far. It may be like early grief - perhaps I am just in shock. 
I am now taking a sleeping pill. I am up to the maximum dosage. Now, it is just a waiting game. This pill is supposed to work on both ends of my problem. 
Ergo, with proper sleep comes happiness. 

I hope you have sweet dreams.
Until next time, Liz 

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