Thursday, March 3, 2011

Home again

C. is now home.  She walked up the lane from the mailbox.  For most of the day she has dozed.  She has eaten very little and has little appetite.  But she is getting up on her own, resting in a comfortable chair and has on her favorite bath robe.  I know that she will be okay.  She will have to be especially careful for the next six weeks--no driving, mild exercise, good diet, no lifting, and cardiac rehab.

As for me, I have been hovering.  I have to stop doing that because it not only doesn't help her, but it readily makes me crazy.  I realize that I am not wanting to be a caretaker, yet I feel as if I need to be doing something.  I have the medications organized.  I have cooked dinner.  I took care of the dogs.  I am sleeping on the couch tonight to be near her in case she needs something.  That is all I can do.  I cannot make her well any sooner.  But I surely can make myself crazy.

Tomorrow I am going to go to my boat for a few hours.  Her parents are coming over to visit.  They don't drive after dark and are not early risers any more.  But they will be able to stay for a few hours to allow me to go to the marina.  I am hoping for a break for a few hours each day.  I consider this to be essential to my own mental health.  I need a certain amount of time to myself, time in the outdoors,  and time to be free of routine. 

For a while this afternoon,  I felt totally at a loss. I felt as if I wanted to flee. The whole idea of care taking seemed overwhelming. Then I thought about how grateful I am that I am healthy and my wife is alive.  Not that many years ago,  she would be dead.  Instead she is mending and is doing well.  That is enough to get me over myself and my self pity.  It will be one day at a time.  I can do that.


  1. i am glad she is home...and smart taking those will need it...and hopefully soon she will be well...

  2. You have good training and a good, loving heart. You will make it and you will both be stronger for it.

  3. Glad that you will be taking it easy and putting on an easy yoke, in your care-taking. Today's CTC said of maturity, that it is "Caring for people, without HAVING to take care of them."

    So be gentle with yourself. Love is enough.

  4. For sure, if you don't take care of you it's going to be hard to give to her. They're using the language "care-giver" now. I think because we don't get as much back, the "healthy" ones. The taking isn't balanced.

  5. First, I just want to thank you for being such a wonderful on-line friend. You're always there, and I'm most appreciative.

    Second, I've had a "full plate" lately and haven't gotten to read blogs, so I didn't know what all was going on with you. Thank goodness, C recognized her symptoms and got to the hospital and that surgery was successful and she is now back home.

    And, yes, you will be a wonderful care-taker --- because you CARE.

    I'll keep you both in my prayers.

  6. When I'm under stress, I need to be careful that I don't give my feelings too much weight - continually seeking their source, and doubting myself for feeling them.
    What you are describing is normal for anyone in your present position -we aren't sure we can do it, (or do it properly,) we dread the responsibility - all perfectly normal.
    Give yourself a break, Syd.

  7. It is good to hear you are taking care of yourself and C.
    I’ve often heard the Dalai Lama say that having compassion for oneself is the basis for developing compassion for others.
    Flowing like water.....

  8. Change feels so scary but soon enough we find ways to adapt if we stay focused and go gently. You're doing so well Syd.

    Prayers for C to have a good steady recovery.

  9. hang around Syd but for the love of pete don't hover. that is one of the most irritating things a person can do to another. She's mending, let her mend. I am fairly certain when she wants some tea or whatever she knows you well enough to ask.

  10. Exactly. Taking care of yourself is mandatory, go for it.

  11. Still praying that everything is mending quickly for C.

    It's nice to have the breaks we seek, and a bit of time with just me and God is essential in my life too. Nature and silence are the places I feel the spirit the most.

  12. I just read about what is going on and want you to know that my thoughts and prayers are with you. I'm also sending you both angels to help you bear your struggles.

  13. Yes Syd, a day at a time. You can do that. All the very best to C and you.

  14. I think that for Al-Anons, maybe especially adult children, the whole 'caretaking' issue presses a lot of emotional buttons. Rooted in the previous experience of the impossibility of 'caretaking' our alcoholic, especially a parent.

    I know it does for me.

    In recovery, even when we love someone the thought of their total dependency threatens all our hard won achievements in 'detaching with love' and so on and resurrects old terrors.

    Just my take. Glad to hear C is doing well and you are getting your own time for yourself. It is essential, not selfish.

    Thank you for your honesty with this blog.

  15. Use that tool box. That is what worked for me. My favorite slogan when my husband was in the hospital? Take it Easy. I'll be keeping you both in my prayers.


  16. just remember to be available when she needs you, but she needs rest most of all and if you're hovering she's probably not resting. Maybe a baby monitor so you can be outdoors and she can call you if needed?

  17. You said the magic words at the end of your entry ... ONE DAY AT A TIME ... there were times during my husband's illness that I clung to that.
    All the very best to you both !

  18. One day at a time always helps when I am depressed. I just try and make it through the day. The thought of a week or a month would be overwhelming when I feel like that.

    Glad you will get a break.



  19. Baby monitors of a staple tool of my caregiving trade...seriously. lol

    I am so glad she is home and I am happy that you both have each will figure all of the details out for this new time in your relationship. She will recover and you both will be back to what is your norm together. Syd you are so caring and loving.

    And thank you for all of the comments on my blog...always look forward to hearing from you. :o)

  20. Recharging your batteries is the best way to be there when she needs you. Maybe a baby monitor could help you get back to your own bed. This too shall pass.

  21. You can only be a good caregiver if you take care of yourself. A tricky thing for us in al anon (well at least for me), is not falling into the habit of selfless martyrdom and trying to do things "perfectly". Yes, definitely One Day at a Time and Easy Does It. You are a loving and caring soul. You'll know what to do.

  22. Thankfully, all we have is what is right in front of us. You and HP can/will handle this just one day, one moment at a time Syd.

    I'm relieved that C is recovering and is now home in your care. She is blessed to have you, and you are blessed to have her.

    Easy Does It!

  23. For me, when the scarey part is over then the exhaustion sets in. Just take it easy mi amigo.

  24. Another wonderful example why we need to stay in program and work it every day, a day at a time. Glad that things went well.


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