I wrote my last blog about being "BACK!!" and our internet connection went down again, or so we thought. It seems Trev's new modem keeps getting "lost" by his computer so you have to put the disc back in and connect it again. Then you are up and running for a while! I guess there is a basic incompatibilty there somewhere so for now we will do it manually and maybe find a workaround. It is a bit like getting stuck in the mud though.
We've also had a series of storms the past few days so I have been turning off and unplugging devices in the hope that all will be preserved that way. I spoke to an acquaintance who also lost her modem the night we did so it seems as if the electrical surge was definitely the cause. What a nuisance this is going to be, turning everything on and off all summer! We need the rain, just not the electrical activity locally.
The rain also prompted me to get some new gravel for the driveway as we have had a wash-away problem for some time. I could have the driveway renewed but it is a huge cost and one I am not budgetting for at present. We have so many household appliances etc that are way past the date when they should have been updated and replaced. Another thing you have to leave for a while on a limited income is painting the house and as that was done some years back and the wind and elements have taken their toll so I certainly need to budget for that in the next couple of years. The sea being just a couple of roads over doesn't help, all that salty wind driven rain also adds to the damage.
Ray and I have had a series of mishaps the past few days. Most of them happened through ignorance of what a person with Ray's abilities can or cannot do. I guess if you see him sitting in his chair, shaved, hair cut neatly looking "normal" it is hard to understand that your cannot trust him to remember a message, to make a decision, to comprehend a situation and solve a problem. The care worker on Friday tried to make him do all of that when he thought I had three hours of care instead of four and panicked when I didn't turn up "on time".
The care worker asked for my cell number. I don't give it out, it is for family only. Once I give it out my time out would be taken up with referred on calls. I want to be "free" in my respite time off. I know it is selfish of me to want to be "out of contact" but it is the only way for me to feel 'free". With all their supposed training and support the worker should be able to make the decisions even if Ray can't. Well, that is the theory anyway. Of course Ray was very upset by the time I got home "late" thinking something had happened to me. He was then in an unhappy frame of mind for the rest of the day. As the dementia increases Ray gets more uncertain about what is going on around him so relies on those around him to remain calm. It is hard to stay calm all the time but I mostly manage it.
In order to get care I have to have a current assessment from the Aged Care team in our local area. My assessment ran out in October, and I have been trying to get it renewed. It doesn't affect my present care but I can't change providers or get more care without a new assessment. It is a real Catch 22 situation as despite many phone calls no worker has come to renew the assessment. I hate ringing government departments, I always get put on hold for long enough to read a large book only to be told to "ring "x's phone and you can leave a message and he/she will call you back". We used to have an expression "you can tell that to the marines!" I guess you all know what that means.
Tonight we have another invasion which comes with the stormy weather. Those small winged insects we call "thunder bugs" or "minute flies". They can crawl in through the flyscreening on the windows and doors and soon form a cloud under the lights. They only seem to live for a day so in the morning the white surfaces are covered in them. Thay usually appear about late January so they are early this year. Another joy of living in a lovely climate close to the coast.
Tomorrow is another day, the woes of today will be forgotten and a new batch of troubles will be set to take their place. No two days alike here. On 9th December it will be 18 years since Ray had his first stroke. I have been taking over the tasks he had to do in the house, the yard, with the family etc since then. Some days I am tired and drag my feet as if I am stuck in the mud. I know there are stars out there, some days I just can't see them.