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life just goes on



Just had a couple of nights with our grand daughter here, it is the winter break and she had two weeks off school. All three of us went to the shopping centre yesterday and spent some time (and some money) and today while Ray was at Daycare she and I went down to The Entrance to the movies and saw the latest Shrek movie. I love her company, she is bright and fresh and really easy to please. A very satisfactory two days.


I am still coming to terms too with the death of my old friend Claude. It is hard to contemplate that people who have been a fixture in your life for many years will suddenly not be there. I know he was 92 and sick most of this year but it is still a hole in my life. On Friday I felt as if I was wandering in circles. I did see Mum and then went to visit another old friend in hospital. I know - my life is so fun!


Mum has been well the past couple of weeks, not as sleepy as she was a while back and so I have no immediate worries about her health. I know she is not here for much longer but her demise does not seem imminent if you know what I mean. She is still in the centre of my life, I visit her Tuesdays and Thursdays and last week I actually visited her on Friday as well as the little bus that takes them out for the morning had broken down. Looking after her and visiting her has been so much a part of my life in Ray’s post-stroke years, hard to imagine life without her in it.


Monday is usually our quietest day of the week, I do housework and Ray reads through the morning and sleeps all afternoon. But yesterday we went to the shopping centre in the morning and then Tori and I played on the Wii doing various forms of Wii Sports most of the afternoon. She challenged me to the 10 minute Jog and I must say that I did beat her by a few yards but it took me every ounce of breath to do it. I used to do a lot of walking and as it is hilly here I was pretty fit but the last two years I have stayed closer to home and lost a lot of my fitness so I will have to concentrate on getting it back now.


This morning while the shower nurse was here Tori and I went to a local beach and did some walking, something else I have not done for a while. I found that exhilarating, I love to be on the beach and although the steps (lots of them and fairly steep) were a bit of a challenge it was a great idea. She always has loved to pick up shells so took another couple of handfuls of those home with her. There were a lot of different birds flying around the escarpment as we mounted the steps too so that was good to watch.


We do live in a lovely part of the world here and although I complain about our winter being long and dreary it is not really cold, the lowest it gets is just above frost point so it is nothing compared with what a lot of people go through. I think it is those spells of grey sky days with no sunshine that make it seems so miserable. That is when I get those mid-winter blues. At least the past couple of days the sun poked through the clouds a few times, sunny periods, just as the forecasters said.


Tonight I spent nearly two hours talking to Ray’s older brother’s wife, they live in Queensland about 50 miles north of Brisbane. She works, her husband had an accident that left him a semi-invalid in the late 80’s so he hasn’t worked since then. She has some of the frustrations of a caregiver who sees a “normal” husband sitting around doing nothing while she works. We both agree that he isn’t normal, lots of defects from that major accident probably including brain damage, but he “appears normal” so is expected to act it etc. No answers to that problem as we all know. She says I am one of the few people who at least try to understand. Now where have I heard that before…lol.


And so days go by, some good, some bad. As the song says: “tra la la la life goes on”. I am still trying to solve the reason for Ray’s pain that is so strong some days and yet not around at all others. Maybe we will get some more answers when we see the neurologist on Thursday? In the meantime I just have to be patient…I’ve heard that somewhere too.


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Life does go on and though it's difficult at times, we take consolation in the fact that we are making a difference in this world - even if it means one more smile on another's face, being an inspiration to others, changing the way other's view disabilities or making life just a bit easier for the next person dealing with caregiving or disability issues.

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Sue, you needed that much needed outing with your grand child while Ray was in daycare. It's getting colder there now day by day so enjoy the winter and the snow when it arrives.

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You are such a sweet heart. It is easy to forget about our own health and well being when taking care of a spouse. I am getting out of shape. I was into swimming alot but now, I get out of breath and don't have the stamina that i did. I also, need to work up to where I was. We sound like stroke survivors. We, caregivers and stroke survivors are alike in that matter.


See you tonight, if William is good.


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