Tuesday, 12 May 2015

I'm drowning.

When I was small, probably about four, we went on holiday to Butlin's. One of the advantages of being on holiday there was all the facilities, fun fair, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, non-stop entertainment and if you had opted for it, meals cooked for you. These days holiday camps like Butlin's and its rival Pontin's are seen as a joke, you've only got to watch the old comedy "Hi-De-Hi!" to see how by 1980 people had fallen out of love with them. Looking back at the yearly holidays that my grandparents took us on my memories are all fond ones. Precious time that I got to spend my my granddad, who I loved more than anyone else in the world, who unfortunately left me alone when I was 12. All fond except one, the one when I was four. My mom had taken me and my one sister to the swimming pool. I don't have any memories of ever going swimming before that occasion, yet at the same time I remember thinking that I could walk out of the changing room and down the slope into the shallow water. So I got my costume on and before I could be stopped I ran out of the changing room straight into the pool. Mistake. I sank like a stone down to the bottom of the deep end. I recall lying on the bottom looking up. I wasn't scared, even though I was actually drowning. Obviously as I am siting here I was saved by the life guard. The experience of being drowned by life is nowhere near as pleasant. 

I know I said I wouldn't complain anymore, but you my blog buddies are the only people I can talk to. Yesterday we had a lovely trip in an ambulance to our local A&E as Mike couldn't breathe properly. The paramedic had checked him over and couldn't find the source of the problem so obviously they had to take him in. I stayed with him in the hospital for a while, but when they said he was going to be admitted, but he would have to wait in the corridor we decided between us that it was best I come home and get some sleep. Jut as well as they didn't find him a bed until 4:15 this morning. Mike is much better this morning. It turned out that he had fluid on his lungs, possibly as a result of the two units of blood he was given on Saturday. So Mike is fine. He might have to start watching what he eats and drinks to limit his daily fluid, but he is fine. Mike scares the hell out of everyone, but it turns out he is fine. 

Do you think he'll be able to empty the dishwasher now? What about doing some ironing? He has never cooked so that isn't going to start and I can't remember him doing the washing, the original excuse was he didn't want to be involved with my daughters' smalls. I change the bed while he is on dialysis, struggling alone with turning the mattress. I am drowning in the mundane tasks, the changes that I have to make to accommodate Mike's new dietary needs and the inevitable grief that is part and parcel of loving someone with not one, but two life limiting conditions. I'm drowning and there is no life guard.


  1. Dear Dear Lorna... you need, must have, some help. If I weren't an ocean away, I'd be straight over. What about friends? Can you ask them to help structure some foodies (they bring something that meets the dietary requirements) once or twice a week, and maybe an hour of assistance with some of those tasks? When my SIL was having challenges, one of his friend's wife arranged a schedule so that no one person was overloaded and it actually became a way to have some nice visits with people who before were shy about when they might come... I'm intending that someone reading this will take up the flag and carry it... I remember all you both did for Paula... and as for getting Mike to do laundry, unless his Mum trained him, it's unlikely he'll take it up as any kind of recreational event now. It's not a pity party you're having, it's a huge challenge and you must have some help; and it's not a judgment about Mike at all to have folks lend a hand now and then. It's about keeping the village from being overrun by wild animals... intending help is on the way, dear Lorna.

  2. Oh Lorna,this sucks it really does. Can you talk to a local Macmillan person about getting some support? One person cannot do everything and remain strong - it wears you down. To be so dragged down by everyday tasks is not healthy - and you need to look after yourself in order to look after Mike. On a truly mundane and practical note - you don't need to turn the mattress very often - I think it is 6 months since I turned ours, with hilarious consequences! (Think upturned beetle.)

  3. My dear friend,

    How often I have so wished that I did not live on the other side of the world.

    I am sorry that I have not been commenting on your blog. You were so good to me, sending me messages and uplifting my very down spirits but I just don't seem capable of this.

    I read your comments and I know all too well exactly what you are going through. So stupid to think that I have a blog and love writing but I battle to string together a sentence of support for you.

    But I do know exactly how you feel. You shouldn't worry about moaning on your blog. Your position is a terrible one to be in. Apart from anything else it has to be one of the most thankless jobs. Mike thinks you have got nothing to moan about because you don't have cancer......you feel guilty because this IS how you feel but how can you feel like this when Mike has cancer...and on it goes. I hope that when you feel like this it doesn't last too long. This was my saving grace because I knew in an hour I would feel so selfish and get over myself and then things would be fine.

    I know too it doesn't help to go out and do something to take your mind off things because nothing changes. When you come in the front door it all hits you again like a ton of bricks.

    I wish I could pop in and have a cup of tea with you and you could talk and talk till the cows come home because this really would make you feel better,

    Try to be strong and don't be too hard on yourself. This is a difficult thing to deal with and a horrid time and you are an amazing person doing an amazing job.

    Lots of love to you