I left home again before nine and got home near to two. It has taken a bottle of coca-cola, a large rocky road block, 1 oazapam, 2 painkillers and an ice pack to unlock the muscle spasms, stiff neck and rigid upper body. My mother is safely in respite care for two lovely weeks. For the past week I have been labelling clothes, marking hostel forms, collecting medication, organizing doctor's visit and trying to keep her on a even keel.
It took twenty minutes to get her into the front of the car and pack everything bar the kitchen sink in the back. I had lists on the back of the front door, the bathroom door, the phone and the back of my hand. The stress came from trying to keep everything low key so she wouldn't have a panic attack at the thought of leaving home even though I made sure the coming home date was on every calendar in the house.
I am not angry about having to do this. I don't have the right word to put in place of angry but I shouldn't have had to cajole then threaten to leave her until she went to respite to give all of us, (all of us is a joke, we are three) a break. Okay so she's not rational enough to really make this decision but then she was rational enough to refuse to go whenever it was suggested.
Children should not expect a parent to support them beyond a certain age and Parents should not expect children to be their support beyond their capabilities. I have read many times that single women without children have been asked "Who will look after you when you're old?" If you have children for that reason, you're not thinking far enough ahead. You don't have children to be slaves to age. You give them life, education, the skill to succeed in whatever they choose and you watch them grow into (hopefully) great human beings. You do not give them a balance sheet with what you did for them from the day they were born and on the other side, what you expect them to do for you in return.
We three, have looked after Mum because we wanted to but it has given us a dread of having to ask for help of any kind from anybody. That's not to say we won't turn round and help somebody who needs it, we've just made a pact that we won't ask for help for ourselves. Hopefully I'll make 100 and be independant but if I feel I'm not going to make it, then it's into a hostel with a nursing home attached and the decision made rationally by me.