Another new year is here and I hope it will be much better than last year. Unfortunately a friend has already been predictable with being obnoxious. I really hate adults behaving like children …..
Added to that I’ve had not so great (medical) news which isn’t serious but I will be glad when it’s been dealt with. It’s just another thing that annoys me about this friend who uses pain / health as a reason for not doing much. The friend knows Rick and I have osteoarthritis as one of the health issues we deal with yet it doesn’t stop us from living to our best ability.
I am tired of life, tired of a friend taking advantage, tired of not having enough hours in the day, and tired of being tired all of the time. I want to get back to enjoying life. My problem is not knowing any more how to help myself feel better. All I have is my faith.
…. after being in Keswick and now in Newport. There is an annual Christian conference over three weeks and we would normally just be there for one day. It was good to have more time there and to have a better look round the town in bettween sessions. One of the afternoons we decided to have a doze as we were so exhausted which became a couple of hours sleep. We must have needed it, particularly me as I don’t usually have a sleep during the day.
We are now helping a friend as he wanted to move to be closer to us as we have been his support since late 2012 / early 2013. A number of years ago we set up a depression forums (http://www.depressionforums.co.uk) and he joined after his fiancee died of cancer in 2012. Rick has talked to him daily for a long time as we have been concerned about his depression / not wanting to live.
A few weeks ago he said he wanted to move to the same town as us as itwould be much easier for us giving him support and him being less ‘isolated’. The part of the city he lives has a depressing feeling and yet his neighbours are nice and like him. Anyway we got him in touch with our housing association as we knew of four empty properties right on top of us, we also gave in a supporting letter to state that we are his support. Our friend has been offered a bungalow opposite ours. There is a road separating our back gardens and is specifically for resident parking. I was dreading having to go in and helping clean up as well as helping packing. It’s been hard work physically yet we have found it okay for motivating our friend.
Tomorrow is the ‘big move’ day for him so he and Rick are leaving early so our friend can sign up for his tenancy and collect the keys. I will be helping ‘supervising’ the packing up of the van, doing a final check round then will be living in my car and the van will already be on it’s way. I am looking forward to seeing all four furbabies and getting back to my bed.
…. then why do I still feel sad?
Our friend went home on Wednesday and for six weeks she will be having carers in three or four times a day. That’s if she lasts that long without telling her social worker she doesn’t want any help. Apparently this has happened before so we will see what happens.
The last time we saw her daughter was last Sunday and haven’t had any contact since but that suits us. Rick finally had enough of the dramas of this family when he rang up our friend’s brother on Tuesday evening and found out the daughter had decided to walk home from the hospital. She was unkind enough to use her uncle by saying she wanted to go to the vending machine in reception and he would go with her. He is a gentle man so it was horrible using him. Rick did the sensible thing and rang the ward. She was found and taken back to the ward and now doesn’t want contact with her uncle. On Wednesday Rick got some strange texts from her eldest daughter so blocked that number and her number. He and I have talked about the situation and has agreed that we should have pulled back weeks ago like I had suggested.
I’m at my happiest when stroking my rabbits. They are getting used to being picked up now and are getting more defined personalities. Cagney is definitely the more gentle, cuddly one who is funny when she decides to start lick me as she is so gentle. Lacey is lively and licks as well and both nibble which is also funny. They are accepting food when we give it to them when we have them out. We have ordered a new hutch which stands on a run with a ramp from the hutch. It is being delivered on Monday along with a thermal sheet and cover. I have been shocked by how willing Rick has been to spend money on them.
Since being back from our holiday I have been feeling stressed again. It has been good to see our friend improve and be back to her old self again although eating well has probably helped. Getting her to church on Sunday morning was fantastic and seeing everybody go to her made my day. One thing puzzled us was finding out she could be going home on Wednesday so we got to the bottom off it when we took her back to the ward. All the way through it’s been on our friend’s notes right from the start that we were to be included in discussions as she and her family all have special needs. She, in particular, needs everything explained simply otherwise she doesn’t understand. Her daughter and grandchildren understand but sometimes they do ask questions which we are happy to answer even if it means getting a member of staff to explain.
With our friend’s first social worker she realized fairly quickly that our friend thinks a lot of us so was willing to talk to us. She knew we have our friend’s best interests a top priority so said we would be included in a meeting before our friend goes home. Unfortunately this didn’t happen as there has been a change of social worker who, in his wisdom, thought it was okay to discuss the care plan with our friend. The ward sister believed that our friend has understood and there was no need for us to be there but found out very quickly that this isn’t the case. Rick asked our friend what the care plan is in front of the sister and she said “I don’t know,” as she doesn’t remember.
Rick brought up issues and I raised my concern that our friend wouldn’t eat properly, then explained about rotten food and out of date food being chucked out by her daughter. I also mentioned that I had to bin rotten food as well and would need to go through our friend’s cupboards and fridge when she got home. The ward sister understood then that we know what we are talking about, our friend will need extra support and she said she would talk to the social worker with the points we have raised.
On a lighter note we have got two baby rabbits which we bought on Saturday morning. They are sisters and we saw the parents who are beautiful, I have called them Cagney and Lacy. They are solely my responsibility. That doesn’t bother me as I’m the one who feeds the cats and fed the dogs despite the agreement when we got our first kitten and puppy that the dog was Rick’s responsibility. Our first dog decided I was the one who fed him so if Rick put down food for him I would have to tell him to go and eat it. Rick’s mum always laughed about it and would comment that if she hadn’t seen it for herself she wouldn’t have believed it. One night Rick took Bouncer to his mother’s one night and he wouldn’t eat the food that was put down so Rick rang me and I told Bouncer to eat his food. When Bouncer heard my voice he went to the kitchen and ate.
The rabbits are very cuddly and love snuggling into us so it has been easy to get attached.
Last week we went to Skegness for a week and it was a much needed holiday. Friends at one of the churches we go to own the caravan we stayed in so knew it would be nice. We were surprised to see the caravan has four bedrooms, two doubles and two singles. The toilet with hand basin were separate to the shower which also had a hand basin.
The one sadness was our friend couldn’t be with us. Her friend had a good time with us though and it was a real break for her. It was lovely just to have a week’s break away from everything. I know I had a good rest as the week went too quickly and I slept well except for the first night as I was overtired and last night.
We got home with a thud as we went to visit our friend with our / her friend before getting home. She was happy to see us and happy to have presents. One was a Christian poem which I read to her and can be put up on the wall, and, two soft toys – one is a lamb, the other a meercat.
While we there her brother rang and our friend passed the phone to Rick. He was asked if we could get a phone charger to our friend’s daughter so Rick said we could do that but asked him to allow us about one hour to one and hour 1/2 hours to drop the friend off and get our stuff home. I wanted a shower anyway. To cut a long story short they weren’t at the hospital when we got there so we left the charger with a nursae then when went food shopping with our neighbour who had gone along for the ride and do shopping.
After we got home and had started relaxing our friend rang up to say we had left her brother stranded so Rick told her what had happened but said we would go and collect him – he doesn’t drive and believed he had missed his last bus home. Anyway it got sorted and we are picking him up tomorrow to visit his neice.
Last December I had my annual diabetic eye screening which was okay. Last week we went for our annual eye tests and both of us did badly on one of the tests and both with our left eyes. After seeing the optician we had to do that test again – it’s the one when we have to press a button every time we see a light. Rick’s was okay the second time but I still had problems seeing the lights so the optician wrote out a letter to be given to our GP for a referral to the hospital. My appointment was for today. I put on my usual act that I was okay and wasn’t worried about it although inside I was worried as I know the eyesight in my left eye is worse than my right eye.
The good news is I don’t have glaucoma or optic nerve damage in either eye but there is some damage in my left eye. It’s minimal enough to be told to go back in ten months – appointment will be sent out – but it still bothers me. The doctor asked me if I have been suffering with headaches. I have which I put down to all the running around we have been doing for our friend and her daughter. The doctor doesn’t think it’s that so I have to trust her. It is upseting as I don’t want to lose my sight but if my sight has to suffer I could be much worse off. I learned a very valuable lesson from a special woman who found out late in life she had diabetes. She was almost completely blind but managed to be independent and loved her dog. I will never forget the lectures I got for not having breakfast and not eating properly as my appetite has been poor for months. This lady will always have a special place in my heart.
With everything else going on I have been worrying about my friend’s daughter since she was sectioned. Her children have been ‘difficult’ with her son being the worst offender. She knows the basics as to why we haven’t been visiting and is annoyed with her son on top of being angry with his latest antics. My anxiety levels have been high because of him and now I feel worse because he is hurting his mother emotionally. He doesn’t even know how much his behaviour is affecting people and he isn’t a stupid person as he plays on the label of being ‘special needs’. I really want to be a friend to this lady as she is nice and she needs moral support.
I know I need a break from everything but it is a case of me letting myself have a break from everything.
The one positive we have had in a while is that our friend who has been poorly has finally had an operation to relieve the pressure on her brain caused by bleeds. It has been a long, stressful four weeks going to see our friend, getting her daughter and grandson to hospital and keeping up with what we normally do.
We have been so tired, fed up and now feel abused and used. Our friend’s grandchildren have been playing up despite being 15, 18, 21 and 22 and should be acting their ages. The daughter has her own problems. She took off last night so we went looking for her as she was suicidal but fortunately the police found her close to her home. She had bought tablets and we don’t know how many she took which was worrying because of what she normally takes. She wouldn’t go home or come round to our home so the police had to use a 136 under the Mental Health Act and take her to hospital.
Today has been a long day. We took our friend’s grandson to see her then went to to another hospital where her daughter had been taken too. We were told she had been taken to another hospital so we went there but we couldn’t be told what is happening. Since then we have been informed that the daughter has been taken to another hospital.
We had a web design meeting which was about 2 hours long. From there we went to our garage to load up the car ready for tomorrow. Thw WPC who was one of the officers who sectioned the daughter last night came round to see us. One of the daughters has been stirring so we aren’t happy. Both of us are feeling hurt and insulted after all that we have done for the family. We did it for our friend but we have our principles. Also my mood has been up and down. I am now very depressed because of what’s goinmg.
I had every intention of posting but I couldn’t. Sylvia is on my mind quite a bit so I am thinking of the good times. Yesterday I was told that the postmortem has been done and she died of a heart attack. She had died sitting on her armchair and looked contented. It has been very hard on all of her as Sylvia had a heart of gold but at least she is pain free, can see again (Sylvia was almost blind) and is in heaven.
Rick has realized that he does need to rest as he feels washed out if he is out. It is hard going for both of us. For Rick it’s being forced to rest and not to drive for four weeks. Me …. I’m being tough with Rick over what to eat, making sure he does rest and not lifting.
Part of me is still angry with Rick as I tried to make him eat better but wouldn’t. Doctors at our surgery were giving him the same advise yet Rick seemed to be in denial. I don’t if the heart attack shook him up or not as he won’t talk about it.
Being in church this morning felt a bit strange as Sylvia wasn’t there. When Mary and I were doing the teas Betty asked me if I would do the teas with her when the rota is done. Sylvia used to do the teas with Betty so I felt quite chuffed that Betty asked asked me.
What’s happened this past week as shaken me up. My mood was beginning to get better, now I am back to square one.
Monday night Rick suffered bad pain in his chest and thought it was an angina attack. By 10 pm it was that bad he rang 111 and an ambulance car arrived. The medic did an ECT then another ambulance turned up so one of the medics looked at it then said they would take him to James Cook University Hospital. I followed up in the car. By the time I arrived there Rick was already in the theatre so a nurse kindly got me a cup of tea and some biscuits. Soon after Rick was back on the ward and found out he had had a stent put in an artery.
A couple of years ago Rick knew he had a blocked artery and had been in to see if the surgeon could get a stent. It couldn’t be done though but this time it was a different artery and a stent was put in. Basically Rick had a heart attack. I went home to get some sleep and I got home by about 2.30 am. By about 10 am I was back at the hospital to keep Rick company. During the morning he had an x-ray taken of his chest. At 2 pm I went home home to catch up on sleep but I knew a friend was going to visit in the evening. I didn’t get much rest as I was getting so many telephone. It did me some good knowing so many people care. This morning I got to the hospital about 9.15 am. Shortly afterwards Rick was taken for a scan and while he was off the ward a cardiac nurse turned up with informatiom. Rick was brought backed before she left so she was able togo through every thing again.
After a while a doctor came into the room and told Rick that there has been some damage to his heart. However she did say he could come home. When we got back the phone calls started again which I am appreciating as people do care. I was devastated to hear that a friend had died in her sleep. It sounds like she just fell asleep and died so it was quick.
Over the past couple of days I have felt angry, upset, tired, numb and devastated. It is difficult to cope and I have been knocked sideways. The important thing is Rick is home.