Energy flagging …

How do people do this? How do they work and take care of their homes and families and deal with a parent in the hospital? I’m wearing down, and it’s only been six days and I’m on Spring Break and not even working right now.

I feel like there’s a lot of pressure, lots of responsibility on me. I guess there is, but I also think I may put it there myself. I’m trying to be a “good daughter”, and I know my mom appreciates that I’m there every day. After all, she was my role model when my dad had his first stroke: she was at his bedside every day. I am assuming that she expects that of me, but maybe she doesn’t. She has encouraged me to do what I need to do, be it go to the hairdresser, to PG’s place to watch a hockey game, or simply sleep in till noon. She has said that she doesn’t need me to be there all the time.

I mean, she’s pretty busy herself. She’s got two therapy sessions a day, which tire her out, so she’s resting a fair bit. She’s working hard at regaining as much mobility as she can so that she can go home. In addition, it takes her a long time to get to and then use the bathroom. She’s also got books to read, word search puzzles to do, TV programs to watch. There’s three square meals a day for her to eat. It’s not like she’s sitting there pining for visitors all day long.

But I feel like I need to be there every day, for myself. I need to know what’s going on, how Mom is doing, what progress she’s made. I need information. It’s hard for me to deal if I don’t know much about a situation. Plus, I am the go-to person for everyone in our extended family. I have spent hours on the phone with aunts, uncles and cousins, and have given my phone number to everyone if they have any questions. I have emailed and texted my brother, sister-in-law, DD, PG, and few other close friends pretty much non-stop since this all began last Thursday.

I suppose I have been running on adrenaline since Thursday. And now I am tired. Even Mom told me I looked tired today. I am sleeping well at night, but I guess I need even more. And what I really crave right now is time alone, just for me, without any pressing issues to take care of.

So I am going out for lunch with my gal pals tomorrow. We will eat and drink and laugh and I will feel loved and supported in the way that only my good friends can do.

And then I will carry on.


9 responses to “Energy flagging …

  1. Hope you had a good time with the girls.

  2. Heed Jazz’s message and it’s so true. You won’t be much good to your mom if you end up collapsing from exhaustion. You’ve been through a lot of crap lately, what with your mom, with the labor shit, and a few other stressors you’ve mentioned. Sincerely, I really do care about you even if we have never met. We all have connectedness at many levels.
    So, go out avec les girls and have a good time, and laugh, laugh a lot.

    • mrwriteon – Yes, Big Brother. *bows head in submission* I will try to follow all this good advice, starting with lunch today. I do feel better, more capable, more on top of things today. And Mom gets a day pass to get out of the hospital this weekend, so the medical staff obviously feel that she’s progressing very well! Yay!

  3. Remember, you’ll be no help to anyone if you crash and burn. You need to relax. And listen to Mrs. Jones about those oxygen masks.

    • Jazz – You’re so right, but you know what keeps running around in my head? After my Dad passed away, Mom mentioned how glad she was that she had taken care of him so much, that now she had absolutely no regrets, that she knew she had done everything she could and that Dad had appreciated all of it. I want that too – but then I also remember that Mom became depressed and bitter at times (though she’d never admit it, of course!) because she rarely took any time to relax and regroup. I have to make a conscious effort that I do take that time – and I’m really looking forward to my lunch out later today!

  4. Poor you – sounds like an adrenaline crash. Take some time for yourself, your mum’s in good hands. And don’t forget there’s a reason why airlines tell you to attach your own oxygen mask first before helping others.

    • Mrs Jones – Good advice, that oxygen mask thing! And really, I’m my own worst enemy, as everybody, Mom included, keeps telling me to go out and do some fun stuff just for me. I have cut down my time at the hospital (it would have been impossible to be there 12 hours straight as I was the first two days!), so I’m settling into a better routine – I hope!

  5. It is not easy, is it?
    At least you are in the same city as your mother. I had about a 45-60 minute commute to get to my mother – and then she had appointments another 1/2 hour or so so further into Scarborough. And she always wanted to be very early. It was a bit stressful. I was fortunate that I could schedule most of my work appointments around her medical appointments, but then I lost a lot of money by not working…..

    Having said all that, we did not have a good relationship (as you seem to have with yours) and this helped bring us closer.

    • VioletSky – It really could be a lot worse, couldn’t it? My brother is a 5 hour drive away, and just came back from a two-week vacation in Mexico, so I don’t know if he can even get time off right now to come see Mom. I know this is eating him up, that he’s not here, but I told him that he should try to come when Mom is home from the hospital. That should be next week, if all goes as well as it has gone so far.