I woke up this morning feeling extremely under par. Nothing I could put my finger on, just a general feeling of not being right.
I can probably nail it all down to a really restless night, worry about my brother, guilt that I am unable to ease in any way the unbearable burden his children are having to shoulder, guilt that I really wish I wasn’t looking after the AP. Concern about my own health as well as my seeming inability to lose any weight (I did lose half a pound last week) and just to top it all off, worry that the whole situation is getting the LSO down. He really doesn’t need that as he is still recovering from being so very ill earlier this year.
Nearly forgot, the problem that actually brought all these feelings to the surface, for two days now we have had no heating and no hot water due to a boiler malfunction. This will be put right by this evening but we had a flush of the central heating system booked in for today and that cannot be done now as hot water is needed. That is now booked in for next Tuesday but I felt a great rush of frustration that was totally silly but is all part of the huge emotional trap that being a carer entails. The situation does not improve with time; most days I can ignore the feelings and by compartmentalising keep my sanity but I guess when the resistance drops it’s a bit like a breach in a sea wall and the waves of emotion rush in to drown me.
Is there any help out there? We have a lady whose professional title is a Care Navigator, coming to see the AP and presumably us too on Monday afternoon with, I hope, some suggestions to help break this immense feeling of being trapped and unable to sort our own lives out. Hopefully she will encourage the AP to get out and about but without us, perhaps even suggest respite care but I’m not holding my breath. The AP won’t think any of it is necessary.
Well that is the question. I have opted for both really, low carbs and low calories and so far so good. I lost nearly 5 pounds last week but doubt I will be as successful this week. Having visitors to stay is a difficult time to diet especially when eating out. I am still a novice at all this but after much reading I understand that if I wish to be back to pre diabetic I must lose weight and the quicker the better seems to be the maxim.
Fortunately I can still enjoy a glass or two of wine with my meals and that certainly improves things. Lots of vegetables, protein, small amounts of carbs, not many fats but good ones like olive oil and even cheese is on the menu with as many herbs and spices as I want, then with the addition of fruit and small amounts of milk and yogurt we have the basis of the diet. The biggest problem for me and the LSO is that I love big flavours and hot ones too and these don’t work for the AP.
AP isn’t really a foodie we have discovered despite her earlier protestations to the contrary. If it can be sucked up through a straw it is acceptable and it must always be easy eating, lots of gravy and very bland. On the other hand I can grill Lemon Sole for her, which is a particular favourite, with chips of course and her plate will be swimming in vinegar and lemon juice. At the end of the meal the AP will sit back and announce how much she enjoyed the delicate flavour of the fish! Still, everyone to their own.The long suffering friend was talking to the AP the other day and they were discussing last meals. I have no idea where the conversation came from but when the AP was asked what her last meal would be the answer was a tin of Ambrosia Creamed Rice. I guess that says it all.
Seventeen days to go.
This wonderful foggy picture illustrates perfectly how hard it is to literally lose ones way.
Another week passes by and this time it has been relatively peaceful. Only a few snipes from the Ageing Person (from now on to be referred to as AP) to break the calm. The worst was the incident of the mislaid sunglasses. We all do this so no drama you would think but no, in this case serious accusations are made that the long suffering husband has deliberately moved them. He actually found them for her where she had left them on the table next to where she sits. Apparently she had looked there and couldn’t see them! That could be a result of poor sight owing to ARMD but AP was absolutely insistent that he had hidden them from her. Although trivial such unreasonable statements cause harm and add to the feeling of being continually besieged and trapped.
We need to challenge our own reactions to these situations which are really of no consequence but they can and do grow out of proportion. We are in danger of disliking this person who lives in our space.
Fortunately we have a busy time ahead and in the midst of this an old colleague of AP’s is coming to stay for a few days which should stem the sniping for a little while at least and also allow us to find a mental space to repair and order our thoughts and feelings.
I must also look at how I can become motivated about losing some weight. It’s so easy to know what to do but an entirely different kettle of fish to do it!
Growing around an old apple tree in the orchard are these wonderful wild blackberries. They have made the most luscious jam which just begged for fresh homemade buttermilk scones and of course, clotted cream. I decided to make some despite the comment that would follow……..and it did.
My mother just cannot resist it and sure enough having thoroughly enjoyed the scone with jam and cream came the inevitable comment, “well these will put weight on”. the scones are tiny and featherlight and yes, if you ate a few with jam and clotted cream they certainly wouldn’t help a weight loss. I think the only answer is to live on dust!
But I cannot let this get me down. I have always gained so much pleasure from cooking and living here in the country I have a wonderful selection of produce to choose from especially during these summer months when we are surrounded by an abundance of good things. Unfortunately at the moment I cook when I am bored and being so trapped I am bored a great deal. In the beginning it was ok and life carried on to a point but as the months have passed we are being ground down with the sheer relentlessness of the timetable we now have to follow.
Well a week on and various attempts to try harder have failed miserably; not failed because anything was arranged badly just unforeseen situations that have caused some distress. Still I decided that I must persevere with lightening the atmosphere despite being under the weather and on antibiotics. It was a little like a suicide mission! I am now accused of speaking a different language to my difficult ageing parent who being deaf often gets things wrong and that was the result of an attempt to have a conversation.
Yesterday she has decided that vanity to the fore, (denied of course) that she needs to lose weight and that means smaller meals. I should add at this point that she is not even vaguely fat, that territory is mine and mine alone. My weight also causes problems because she is not allowed to talk about it but constantly finds sneaky ways of mentioning it. I am quite aware that I have a weight problem and part of that is caused by the stress of looking after her but that is another issue to be discussed later. Her meals are already small but apparently these cause bloat. I explained that it would be better to look at food content as that is more likely to cause bloat than the small quantities consumed. I was told that was nonsense. Unsuspecting and long suffering husband comes into the conversation by agreeing that food is usually the culprit. The response to this was an astonishing attack that “she was not going to speak to him as he always sides with her.” I mention the small quantity of carefully considered meals prepared at home that over the last 3 years have helped to keep her fit, well and active and now pre-diabetic and not diabetic because when we go out the meal of choice is nearly always fish in batter with chips. This doesn’t apparently cause bloat or put weight on. The conversation did not end well.
Well the atmosphere is not at all lightened and I am trying hard not to wish my life away.