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new focus - on my life-yes, MY life


nancyl

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well i give my all, to dan and will continue to...... but i am trying to focus on LIVING - myself.... Dan continues to dwell in his own misery and depression. and we have and will continue to address those needs.. I would give anything to have MY DAN... and for a stolen moment at a time i see him... but he almost intentionally ( wonderful stroke) remains locked in his unhappy world.. i surly wish i could pull him out of his pit of dispair. But as we all know stroke or no stroke only the person with the problem can make the decision to at least make the attempt to get better. And with dans cognitive affection it may or not be in his power to make the decision - i just dont know- but i do know I can not force him to be happy. I can and do support him and do my very best, of that i am confident.

But other parts of my life need attention- My Weston needs his grandma. He would be fine with out me ( many grand children are) but I need to be that grandma, just as my children had that grandma. Some people choose not to be that grandma and i make no judgement - but for me it is important...

So when i get up in the morning i take- TAG our dog and go and get Weston and we go for a walk.. But we are working on training TAG to pull Weston in a bike carrier ( the kind you pull behind) . And i must say it is going well. Very cool... I am spending more time with him. We are working on keeping tag in the yard and not running - away on us.. unfortunately this is taking a electronic collar do accomplish... but maybe someday??

I actually remembered my daughters birthday and bought a well though out gift ( a rechargable vacuum) for the cabin.

I have been able to talk with my girlfriend ( you know one of those few who matter) . Her daughter had a baby boy - who has suffered severe brain damage during birth.. and decisions are being made. I am just supporting her with whatever i can. and she is supporting her devastated daughter. More sadness, but as we all know there are many aspects to life - not all pleasant. But life is about learning, and preparing for our next life.

We have a 79 ford pick up completely redone.. but it just sits.. so i called dans cousin ( the one and only person dan enjoyed and respected, and yes has has checked up on dan) - they both shared a intrest in older cars and Pat his cousin fixed up a old 50 something Belaire - put a lot of money into it and it is beautiful. he has stopped and given dan a ride.. and came and showed it to dan when he completed that project ( about 5 yrs in the making) so dan was into it pre stroke. nice genuine person.. anyhow i called him and asked him if he would like dans pickup - and he does.. we discussed what to do , basically i will sign it over to him and he can do as he pleases with it.. he has a son who will be thrilled, then as time goes on it may make its ay back into our immediate family... but when i give up or gift something it is forever. So if it never happens i will be OK... And the prestroke Dan would be absolutely OK with this arrangement.. Pat will appreciate it and enjoy it.. and he is a mechanic so he will take care of it... the only other option is to let it rot.. since i fixed it last summer ( overhauled the engine) it has been driven 5 times in one year - wont take long and the thing will just cost again... so one more issue looming.... my kids do not need the pick up , except robert. But robert has no where to put it, and it will just be a burden to him financially ( he is good with cars but a 79 ford although simple for old timers mechanics can be difficult for novices) . and i have helped robert out financially enough that , in the interest of fairness to the other kids enough is enough...

Then we have a willys jeep ( circa late 50's) has not been running for about 5-6 yrs... I have a former co worker who is always doing projects - so i offered it to him for a lot less than its value... reason, the guy will fix it up , take care of it, enjoy it and will give dan a ride in it when it has been completed.... no emotional attachement to it , just the desire to see it when its done.. so another issue solved.

Now the issue of our home - i have looked at a fabulous home.. wow.. but i just didnt feel it when i looked at it... there is a regular ranch home ( brand new) a block from aprils.. would require some modifications , but doable for our family.... But then there is my dream - to help others , but my daughter April has said something that stuck with me... Dan and his depression has the power to ruin or hinder another persons outlook and rehab.. and as much as i wish that was not true, it is... I think Collen and Ray got a taste of Dans very special ability to gloom an entire household... so for now at least i guess untill we can be a inspiration to others - we should not be a hinderance... my dream is not dead just delayed i hope... so my options buy a great big home not close to april, but not a big issue as it is on the way out to my SIL farm... buy a house 1 block from them , and do some modifications on a brand new home, or build a new home close to them with the idea of building on should my dream come to fruition .... those decisions are tabled for a bit, as i ponder...

Dan is under the weather again - not sure with what, he sounds froggy and did not feel like getting up today - he is constipated one of our many nemesis.. i will need to do a enema tomorrow if the meds dont work ... his stomach is working he passes gas , but i sure wish that issue would improve... i mean who feels good when they are all "bound up"...

Rocky our cat returned home tonight - he must have holed up somewhere during the fireworks as i havent seen him in about 3-4 days...

My patio deck even looks good -- in my own style .. i am sure the gorilla is grunting but hey he can kiss my a--.... well people thats my little entry for now ... nancyl

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Nancy, what you're going through sounds to me like it might be the goal we all seek: Acceptance. Dan is what he is, although I know he has some happy moments too. Remember how he perked out of his deep gloom when he knew we were going to the casino? It's good you have the kids, to talk things through, at least you know for sure they have both of your best interests at heart. They see the big picture more easily than you can right now.

 

The car thing, you KNOW I understand, it was so hard to sell the Corvette but even though it's just a machine, you think of it as a living thing, that deserves better than to sit in a garage doing nothing but rotting away. It was sad, but also good, to remove that "burden" from our lives last summer. Funny how material things don't matter so much anymore, I'd give them all up to have my old life back.

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Nancy, I don't know if this will help you or not but, I kept on reminding myself of how much I loved Charlie and how much he loved me. I have a note from him posted on my 'fridge, even now that he is gone...I will always wrap that love around me. It was hard for us, too - he got depressed (rightfully so) and had lots of problems but, our love made it easier.

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Nancy,

 

Please forgive me if I don't say this right! But I hear you say "I would give anything to have MY DAN." Well I'm no miracle worker or Saint, but if two survivors could meet, talk as best we can to each other, I feel that would help the other person cope with the same situation and (maybe) have a different outlook about the stroke that happened to them?

 

I mean if he could see my condition and a smile on my face all day and night it may be the answer to make them feel better about how they could be with wife, kids, and family and friends alike!

 

That anything you would give could be a trip to my house so you would see how we cope and Dan would or maybe feel better about his condition and start to feel better about himself. You would stay at my house, we go places, see others in worse conditions than me and him.

 

I'm basing this on how some of the wounded soldiers felt so much better about themselves after seeing me struggle from a stroke trying to help them with a smile on my face. It's easy to feel like a person nobody wants to be around but the family still loves you in your condition.

 

His own misery and depression could get much better I think from my experiences with the wounded guys that has lost limbs and family members but began to heal and family situations got so much better for them.

 

As you can see I'm willing to do what I can to get Dan in a better mood with himself and family especially with you his only care giver. I know his condition is a bit more than mine but we both have brain loss. I know the seizure problem and speech is there but can be controlled.

 

I will be willing to do what I can to see you and Dan have a happier home life!

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Fred --- we will make it out there some day - i promise, and i am a do what i say kinda gal LOL... I am sorta waiting for dans cognition to see if it will straighten out any... although he is regressing physically - he is gaining in cognition some but it has been a two steps forward and one backwards type thing... dan resolves all the time to be better, do better ect.. and then forgets or slips into the i dont give a crap mode... but we will be coming your way - should start watching airline prices --- what is your closest airport.. ??

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Hi honey: been so wondering what you have been up to - way too much, as usual, I see - LOL.

 

My only offer of solice is that after four + years, Bruce is back on board. Cognitive recovery - absolutely. Maybe the depression meds finally working. Maybe Bruce has reached acceptance. But he certainly is more verbal about what he is thinking and feeling and that is a positive - gives me some direction.

 

We continue the slow clean out. This weekend we donated all my stuff: poker books, clothes, I deliberately left everything out, right at his table so he could see it. I explained that I knew how difficult it was to see parts of himself leave the house, forever. He understands why, but it hurts nonetheless. But I explained to him that parts of me had to go as well. That portion of our lives is gone and not coming back.

 

We have the big stuff coming up for us. For now; books, clothes, small appliances and tools are nothing. Like your vehicles, we have the wood stove and stereo to go. Albums and musical equipment is on hold for at least another year. And his best friend has agreed to tackle that for me - Bless him!

 

Its time honey, to take some time off. And I am so glad you recognize that and are moving forward. Exactly how I felt when I went back to work 2 years ago and yes, we re-eval as we need to. Even with this new round of change, been fitting in time to get things done - mostly cleaning - that is important to me. That is what is important to me and fitting it in makes me so much happier, comfortable. Like I count too. Rock on! Debbie

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Dan is in the process - the very LOOOONG process of acceptance.. and i do believe if and or when he can get to the point of that ( and of course we all struggle with it- daily) his quality of living will improve..he seems to have a little recognition of the need to accept, to be nice, to be empathetic.... weston was trying to get his attention - dan was locked on his checkers game - and dan sorta pushed him out of the way and name called him... i let dan have it.. and dan seemed to "get it" and asked weston for a love... and weston the happy little boy he is gave ummpa a little love.. so i seen MY DAN for a second , i would love for a minute , then five , then ten ect.... but i love the second - the glimpse of MY DAN... I sure miss him.. see i to am struggleing with acceptance... darn dog got away tonight - the deer were just to much of a temptation.. so i am waiting for his arrival from his escape... either way i am making headway with him - and even if the neighbors complain i know i am doing my very humane best with my animal.. friend... companion...

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I think we caregivers plateau as much as the one we are taking care of. Ups and downs, so much more exaggerated than it used to be. But it's good to have the time to take a giant step forward every once in awhile.

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Good idea Nancy, focus on caring for yourself too and enjoy your other family members.

 

You are already doing your all for Dan.

 

Best to you,

Julie

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