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Protected: Up those stairs

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Somebody special once gave me the book Shantaram and this paragraph sums up what I’ve felt, what I still feel. My brother’s situation stirs up a lot of feelings.

At first, when we truly love someone, our greatest fear is that the loved one will stop loving us. What we should fear and dread, of course, is that we won’t stop loving them, even after they’re dead and gone. For I still love you with the whole of my heart, Prabaker. I still love you. And sometimes, my friend, the love that I have, and can’t give to you, crushes the breath from my chest. Sometimes, even now, my heart is drowning in a sorrow that has no stars without you, and no laughter, and no sleep.

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Another day, another hospital visit

I went to the hospital early this morning so I could help my brother eat his breakfast. Yesterday I was really upset to come into the room where he was on his own and find him covered in porridge and yogurt. The staff had obviously taken away his main breakfast tray but left him those two items to finish. He doesn’t have the motor skills to be accurate when putting food into his mouth anymore.

It was really distressing for me to see him in such circumstances. Theoretically, visiting hours are only from 3 – 8 but I made a point of calling the ward yesterday night and asking if I could come. They were ok with it but the call was only for formalities sake – whatever they said, I was going to be there regardless.

This morning he was on oxygen as his sat levels are pretty low. We manoeuvered around the canula and he ate most of his breakfast, with me holding the cup for him and putting cut up bits of egg and toast onto a fork so he could bring it to his mouth. It took a while but it worked pretty well and we casually chatted during the process. A quick cleanup, med time and then I helped him to settle for a nap and stayed reading quietly when he slept.

It was nice. For me, it actually felt like quality time and possibly the first time I felt that I could still have meaningful interaction with him and enjoy it, without being so distressed about what the cancer had changed in him.Living in the present, rather than the past.

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I am so angry a lot of the time

The alternative mood is despair. I am not entirely sure which one my husband prefers but the sadness lasts so much longer, and at least with the anger I am trying to work out ways to remove other people, rather than myself.

That was tongue in cheek, you know. Sort of.

When my father was dying, this blog was very cathartic. I wrote and I wrote and I wrote and I felt better. In this time of my brother’s dying, I write a lot less. It is so much harder.

My father’s death was awful but I’ve always felt it was just bad luck that made it so. Or probability, if you will. Out of x amount of men at his age, y percent of them would die in those particular circumstances and 100% of them would inevitably die.. He was a low end bell curve marker, basically, and his death just corresponded to a particular point on the Great Bell Curve of Life. Going from statistics to actual people examples, he just happened to be the person that this particular circumstance happened to. Why him? Well, why not?

Which is to say that my pathetic high school mathematics, coupled with the indoctrination of generations of eccentric Maynes, who believed that life wasn’t fair and schooled me to accept it, helped a lot in accepting his death.

Random shit.

But my brother dying? Yeah, that doesn’t feel like random shit. It feels pretty fucking personal, actually: like some nebulous construct does exist and noticed my family and wanted to see how much grief it could make us feel within a certain timespan.

I’ve done/am doing all the right things to keep my tenuous grip on control and sanity but it is really hard because nothing seems to really help. I zone out a lot (my counsellor tells me that is disassociation and worrying). I don’t remember things I’ve written, or read or even done. My husband asked me today if I’d had lunch or breakfast and I honestly couldn’t tell him.

There’s a whole lot of family drama going on, apparently triggered by me. I’m home for all of this month so naturally I want to spend as much time with my brother as possible. I’m not put off by the fact he can’t really talk in a way that is understandable, that he has a lot of obsessions, that being with him these days meansĀ  a lot of washing and a lot of heavy lifting. I have the time now, right now, and I try to be there as much as I can; as much as I am wanted. My brother is my number one priority right now and I do have the time to be there in whatever capacity, for as long as it takes, because I couldn’t always be there before, due to my job. In short, it’s a re-balance of energies.

But some family members see that I’m devoting however much time to him and they take it as a passive aggressive commentary on their own interactions.It really isn’t and it makes me very sad that they would think so. Surely, at a time like this, we should all just consider what is best for the primary people involved?

It hurts me such a lot to watch things unfold. I can’t control anything and any help I give won’t make much difference in the long run. My lack of control, my expanding out into unknown territory is very hard to deal with. I like to think that I do help with my practical stuff but when my mother/mother in law tells everybody that I am stirring up trouble, well it makes me feel like that what I do is awful, not helpful.

And there we are, another notch lower on the sanity bow/arrow competition.


(Just want to make it clear that my SIL never makes me feel this way.)

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Protected: Back in hospital

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