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Hawaii Dreaming...or anywhere but here



i am very confused.


being in the position of both survivor (moi) and primary physical caregiver (John) and secondary executive caregiver (my dad) leaves me feeling like the poster girl for multiple stroke/TBI personality disorder.


because i don't have any obvious physical/psychological disabilities, and am a working professional and gifted in many of my endeavors (including shaking money from trees, extracting information from unnamed sources, knowing when to hit which authorities with what letter, juggling/kiting money to obtain a loan with negligable interest, etc), many folks, including my two survivors and my mother, feel that i am perfectly OK and are more than willing to dump more of their needs onto me.


therefore, strange things keep on happening to me. some examples include:

1) my mom knows that i was aphasic after i stroked but did not let go of the belief that i had told her not to visit me in the hospital and to 'take care of daddy' when i called them from the ER less than six hours after i stroked until 2004. this was after my dad stroked twice and had been aphasisc for 18 months. my mom went on to forget what aphasia meant or even that it was a word, and blamed it on being 80 years old;

2) John does not believe that i have any sort of residual physical/psychological trauma from our car accident in 9/04. he thinks that i was just along for the ride;

3) now that my dad knows that he is probably never going to walk again, he wants to learn rug hooking as a way of strengthening his hands and arms and because he is an artist and wants to do something creative. my mom has a rug hook and some patterns and yarn in the basement. she told me to go to a knitting store (where would i know from a knitting store? it's not on my top ten list of interests) and buy him a rug hooking set because she's 'too busy' to go down to the basement and look for her rug stuff;

4) John thinks that since he has a TBI and all the symptoms that come with it (cognitive deficits, memory lapses and loss, visuospacial problems, etc), it is his problem and that i should not be bothered when i have to clean up after him, take him to work because he forgets to set the alarm clock, take care of all of his litigation/accident correspondence because he can't handle it, come and fix it whenever he attempts a repair/action which he used to do before but can't now, etc. i should not complain about it, either.


meanwhile, i get tired easily, i get sick easily (i catch a lot of viral syndromes from the combination of having a profession that has to deal with the public plus a compromised immune system), i have to go to labs frequently and adjust my Coumadin almost as frequently, i get wierd parasthesias/burning sensations for various reasons, i'm in pain a lot from my autoimmune arthritis,and i am unable to function without my antidepressants.


let us not forget what i do for a living. if i get one more emergency cellphone call from my XXXXXX patient who wants to try to talk me out of sending her to an inpatient detox, i'll scream


so, at the present time i don't feel like having sex with John, i don't feel like seeing John and my parents, i don't feel like working, and a yearlong all-expense paid vacation in Hawaii sounds like what i need.


21. just because i look competent doesn't mean i want to take you on as a project




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Aw, shucks, Sandy! If you won't take me on as a project, can I take you on as one? Here's my analysis: You are under-appreciated and over-worked. Both these states come with being a daughter, a wife, a caregiver and/or a survivor. Solution: Mother's rarely hear their daughters so don't take it personal and ignore her missinformed ramblings. Husband's also rarely hear their wives so bob him in the head---oops, too much damage there already---so bob him in the butt until his wife-deafness disappears. As for your dad, get on line and order him some hook rug supplies because you're never too old to be 'daddy's little girl.' The stuff in the basement will kick up your allergies anyway. As for the survivor stresses, I'm out of my league here so I'm writing you a prescription for more anti-drepessants. My husband is having great luck with Celexia.


So, how did I do? Did I earn the quarter fee that I charge?


Seriously, it's never fails to amaze me how much misinformation and no information here is out in the world about aphasia and other stroke related language disorders!!! It's very frustrating, especially coming from someone who really should know better.




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Jean-Thank you flowers.gif for taking me on as a project!


i am already on Lexapro, a form of Celexa (Celexa has right and left-handed identical molecules, Lexapro has only left-handed molecules. it appears to be stronger. i chose Lexapro because i had some samples in my office) in am also on Wellbutrin-SR. if i take only and too much Lexapro, i sleep all day and i'm very forgetful. if i take only and too much Wellbutrin, i don't sleep and i'm very irritable. too little of either and i'm still depressed.


i think this anniversary thing has kicked everybody's feelings into high gear (see previous post). next year, i will take vacation when i did in the previous year-mid-August. that way, i can be away for my anniversary, and be back before the storm hits for everybody else. definitely less patient damage that way.


i am getting my dad a rug hooking kit, but i have to be careful about this 'daddy's little girl' thing, because daddy still wants to move in with me. he even offered to bring my mom with him as a consolation prize to her. he told me last week that i should have never gotten married again, and that 'you would have plenty of things to do' (his speech is getting better) if i wasn't married, like take care of him. he and John are in competition for my affections.


my mom and i have historically not gotten along since i fired my first sponsor, left my first husband, and separated from her. that's a long story which i'll tell another day. i look like my dad and my temperament is a lot like my dad's. my dad was also a fashionista, and my mom is sorely compromised in that area.


John went to Sephora yesterday and got me another LipFusion super plumping lip gloss (has all sorts of stuff that make my lips actually look plumper, so i don't even have to consider Botox), and a Bourjous mascara top coat in iridescent green to go with the super plumping mascara in green. he took down the two makeup items, and asked a clerk in Sephora where they were. he also picked up the two tickets for Washington and an ethernet cable. he knew i was upset, and he redeemed himself.


my XXX patient called me three more times and i had to talk to her at 1 am. she was mad at me. oh well, at least one person in the conversation will remember it today.


i feel really tired today, but better



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That's very wise of you to plan your vacation, next year, in late August. You'll be refreshed and better able to deal with the 9/11 fall-out next time.


Glad John redeemed himself! Husbands have a way of doing that just then they really need to. The problems with your mom sound like classic mother/daughter control issue stuff to me. But that remark your dad made about not getting remarried--you'd have plenty of time for other things---would have hurt my feelings. I was just kidding with the 'daddy's little girl' remark but your dad is not, from the sounds of it. Do you suppose it's more fear based than a true competition with John? I mean it's a scary thing to get elderly and need help and the idea of strangers giving that care in a nursing home is even scarier yet.



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my dad always felt that way. since i'm his 'blood' and because i'm so much like him temperamentally, he takes me more seriously than anyone, including my mom. he always took care of my mom and expected me to also take care of her from the time that i was a small child. my mom was both enmeshed and in competition with me for most of my life. when i separated emotionally from her, the competition became worse. remember, they're Holocaust survivors-they're not average people. add to the mix my paternal grandfather, who died when i was 6. both my dad and my grandfather were rebellious, intellectually gifted (my grandfather was a leftist union organizer, my dad was a Zionist terrorist), street smart, and led very interesting lives...like me. my mom felt left out, and she always blamed me for it, though i had nothing to do with it.i have an interesting family, don't you think? i keep on telling my parents i'm reasonably mentally healthy in spite of them, not because of them.


i am not hurt by what my dad says. i responded to the last statement blogged with 'like take care of you? i don't think so' my favorite comeback to you is, 'and what are you going to do about it? John has similar responses to him. he'll get angry and come back with some other remark, but then he'll shake his head and start laughing. he has SERIOUS control issues. i keep on offering to find him a nice nursing home if he doesn't like living with my mom, but he continues to turn me down. i tell him that he's 50 years too late in deciding that he doesn't like my mom's attitude, that he should have done something years ago, and that now he's stuck in this situation and he has to make the best of it.


sandy cloud9.gifcocktail.gifgiggle.gif

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Yes, you do have an interesting family! Strong. Survivors in ways you and I can never understand. It sounds like you've got a good relationship with your dad...you can bully him right back as good as he gives.


When you get right down to the nitty-gritty of any family, you could probably use some aspect of their lives as examples in abnormal or disfunctional phychology books, don't you think? My mom was a security freak---a by-product of childhood abandonment issues---always squireling money and stuff away for a rainy day. The Viet Nam war had her stock piling stuff like crazy for the rationing that never came. When she died, we had to check everything for hidden cash.


I don't know about your parents but mine understood and forgave each other's foibles in a way that outsiders---even their children---could never do. It kept them together when others might wonder why. Perhaps your parents are the same?



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Jean-i know that my parents forgive each other their without any real understanding. my mom still constantly asks me to explain my dad's actions because she doesn't understand them. my dad assumes that i understand him and doesn't particularly care if anyone else does


sue-i'm still willing to meet you for a very looong vacation. check your datebook.


sandy giggle.gif

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