Tuesday, 4 October 2016

So............

Well, it has been a total rollercoaster lately, as you know, and last week, boy did we go up and down and down and up, spin round and round, through the air, down to the floor and all over again.  And again.  And again. And, well, you get the picture!

To say that we felt seasick was an understatement.

I am writing this on Monday morning, after a very stressful few days to update you on current proceedings.  However, by the time you read this we will have had a further meeting and who knows, it may all have changed again.  If it has, and if I have the mind and brain power, I will write an addendum at the end of this! - I did write one, it is at the bottom, written on Monday night.

Before I begin though I want to thank you again so much for the prayers, kind thoughts, e-mails and messages wishing Man and us well.  As you will see some of that most definitely worked, and some, meh, well, not so much.  That isn't down to you though!  That is down to the stubbornness of some people.  At one point during the meeting we had I felt so sad and low and then all of a sudden I thought of all of you standing behind me and it really did help.  It didn't change anything, but I felt the support and that was a great help.  Thank you thank you thank you thank you.  I told Hubby about you all and he was so thankful too!

So............

Last week when we saw Man he was not good, he wasn't eating and drinking, and was on a drip.  He said that he had been drinking milk, but this turned out to be a very small amount and that was all that he was eating and drinking.

When we had the meeting that I asked you for your prayers and good thoughts about on Thursday we were told that Man is not improving physically, yes, there are some small little improvements, and yes, there might be more in the future, but he is not going to return to how he was the day before the stroke - which was already not good because it turns out this isn't the first stroke that he has had.  The decision was taken away from him as to what will happen next and Man will, at some point be moving to a Nursing Home.

Discussions were held about where this might be, and it looked as though it might be somewhere closer to us.

There was a lot of other horrid stuff said and I will not go into that, but know if you are dealing with something similar - Jo, I am looking at you here! - know that we get it!

Overall, it seemed as though it had gone as well as it could have given the circumstances.

Man was still on the drip, still not eating and drinking by the way.

Then, the you know what hit the fan and oh boy did it do so in the most spectacular fashion!  I cannot describe to you.  It seems that Mans other extended family members didn't agree with this outcome.  Oh no.  He is "fine" he will be alright, he can go home, or just have some carers pop in and out and all will be well.  Really.........  He can't stand on his own, can't dress himself or wash himself or therefore cook for himself, or get to the bathroom safely, or get out of his chair safely.  He has had a fall in hospital of all places for goodness sake.  You really think that this person can go home.  Let alone the fact that he isn't eating or drinking anything.

I am cutting a very long and distressing and upsetting story short here, but it all came to a head last night.  Hubby and I called a meeting with Mans other son who was coming to visit and the other extended - but not blood related to Man - family member who was the main person meddling concerned about what was happening to Man.  We got them all together and talked through it all.  Which really means we told them in no uncertain terms and eventually they couldn't disagree anymore.

During all of this Man expressed a preference to move nearer to his other son.  Which is rather a kick in the teeth for us - along with his remarks about us not having any children and me being fat, which I realise he doesn't understand or know what he is saying, but he still kind of does and knows when he is being nasty so it hurts even though we let it go - but, if that is what he wants then that is OK with us, because all we want for him is the best for him.

His other son lives over 3 hours drive one way from us, but he has said that he would like Man to go and live nearer to him and is prepared to totally take on all responsibility for managing that and for managing his life going forward.

The plan therefore is to talk to social services today - we have a meeting scheduled - and pass it all over...........

Whether that will happen or not I don't know.  Whether or not Man will make it out of hospital we don't know because he is off the drip, but still not eating or drinking.

There is of course also the huge issue of what to do with all of his stuff and his house etc etc etc etc etc.  The "other" relative is also already meddling in this and saying he wants various things, but he comes last on the list after Man and his sons!

It isn't dealt with yet, and he certainly isn't well and is a long way off being settled, but it seems as though it will pass out of our hands.........  Not sure if that is good or bad, it is sad though and will be a massive change in many many ways.  What will happen next is anyones guess, and you can be assured that I will keep you posted.

What is next for me and Hubby?  I really have no idea!  This is going to be a massive change in our lives.  A bit like sending your child off to Uni and then you are empty nesters I guess.  I will throw myself more into my work, which I think will focus on designing rather than bag and other trinket making because I think that I am better at that, and enjoy it more.  We also have, as I am sure we all do, 1000 projects around the home to get done, we have hobbies and interests to return to and I have Basildon Park to return to.  I don't suppose we will be bored!

That is it really.  It has all been very stressful, quite acrimonious at points and definitely frustrating, but it might, I stress might!, move on.........  Or not.

Thank you again for the support and kindness and for bearing with me.  I didn't make it round again this week for Five On Friday, but I hope to this week!  Perhaps by the end of this month I will have some sort of rhythm of life again.

See you soon and thank you, and for those of you in a similar situation, hang in there, don't give up and know that you are right!

Amy xx

The addendum to the story is this.  Man can move to be nearer his other son.  Other son will be responsible for organising it all from his end.  Other son has been told by me to get on with it and instructed in what he needs to do.  We wait to see if he does it.  I, in the meantime, am left with the delightful jobs of purchasing a wheelchair, sorting out powers of attorney, financial matters, house sale, house clearance etc etc etc etc.  You can imagine........

Man is more amenable than ever before about moving, what to do with his possessions and whilst it might be a stretch to say he is looking forward to it, he is looking towards the future, not backwards and that cannot be said to be a bad thing can it.

The next few weeks especially are going to be very busy getting a new home for him found and sorted out as well as all the things at this end.  I am going to try and pace myself though and start to put Hubby and I first again and then all of this second.  Otherwise when he does go and it is all sorted we will have no lives of our own left and we have already let our lives drift for long enough. 

That is it for now!  More will follow no doubt in due course and I do have a little - well two actually - somethings that we have already acquired which I will share on Friday.

I will end with this, which is not advice, and must not be taken as such because I am not qualified to give it, but please do this.  Write a will, write powers of attorney, advance directives, living wills, or whatever else are the appropriate documents in your country and get good advice about filling out/writing/making them from proper qualified people - not me!  This will save you and your loved ones so much heartache and also so much work when they are trying to deal with other stressful matters.  We managed to get some of the way with this with Man, but not all the way and the last bit is going to be difficult and painful and expensive.  We will do it, but if it had been done years ago, oh, how much better it would have been.  So go and do yours, please!  As soon as I have Man sorted we are off to do ours!

37 comments:

  1. its a very stressful time for all involved, but a time will come when peace and normality resumes you just have to ride it out, we both have wills in place and I have a living will, after being to hell and back wit my parents I didnt want to put my children through the same thing.

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  2. Good luck with all the work ahead. Prayers being sent to you.

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  3. I'm so sorry Amy, I hope things go smoothly during the transition. I've been through this with my own parents and it can be a helpless feeling with much uncertainty and stress. Relationships get strained and sometimes never quite bounce back, but it sounds like you have your heart in exactly the right place. We didn't want to put our own children through the same thing, so we have taken steps to make sure. I hope it all gets sorted out and things go smoothly or as smooth as they can under the circumstances. Sending prayers and hugs xo Karen

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  4. It sounds like a lot of adjustment is going to be needed on all sides. You might find Man won't be able to leave hospital until the nursing home is ready to take him. I also found that donating large items of furniture to charities was not as easy as I thought as they were quite choosey but I did find Gumtree useful, people bought the most unlikely things! All the best.x

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  5. You are in my thoughts, Amy. A big hug.
    Amalia
    xo

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  6. Much love Amy. It has been such a difficult time for you. It may not seem like it at the moment but I think you've handled it all brilliantly. I'm intrigued by your 'somethings'. Xx

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  7. When you're in the middle of a situation like this, you wonder how you are ever going to come out of the other end of it, and what will happen when you do. You've worked so hard with your relative to try to do the best for him, and now it must feel a bit disconcerting to be handing over the responsibility to someone else - but that just means you've done your part of the job. All of the prayers for health and support go to you as well and although the outcome of a situation isn't always what we expect, it's what the Universe knows is right for us. This next run of practical jobs will hopefully be more satisfying than you might think right now because you know that it's for a positive purpose. Families are shapes that change and shift and yours is changing now. You and your husband will be just fine once the shape has settled again xx

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  8. Dear Amy, My heart goes out to you over all this sad, sorry saga, which is unfortunately not uncommon. Those who do the most work for a very long time, as you have, can be flicked aside when it comes to the crunch, and the parent goes after a more distant child. It broke my heart years ago when it happened to me. You are very perceptive, and know that you have to hold on to your own life and relationship, and I know you will do it. Sorting the house is time-consuming, but at least you have an end in sight, and can see your progress as you go along. With your organsational skills it will be done as efficiently as is possible. Re people wanting particular 'things', no matter how hard you try, years later someone will ask 'do you know what happened to that ???, I always wanted it; or where is that little photo from 1950??' Best of all luck with it Amy. This year has been hard for me, some of it I am unable to share on my blog, but I have been with you in spirit. love. xx

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  9. Thinking of you all Amy. Clearing houses are never easy and quite exhausting. Pace yourself and make time for you and your husband whatever you do B x

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  10. This is such a stressful time for you but I hope you can take some comfort in that you have done all you can and there will be some respite for you and your husband. You deserve the time for yourselves. Xx

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  11. I really feel for you. For you all. Just know that, whatever happens, you did your very best. No-one can do more than that. And don't forget to make time in all that sorting and organising for some time out. A little bit of self care goes a long way. xx

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  12. My heart goes out to you, know that you are and will continue to be in my prayers. You have both done the best that you can and that is all you can do. Take care and look after each other.

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  13. thinking of you xxx take care of yourselves at this time of much stress xxx

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  14. I have many friends going through the same sort of thing. I do think it is a shame when folks can't actually handle themselves as true adults and actually get along and do what's best for a family member. I particularly don't like it when individuals start claiming things as their own before someone is gone or even shortly thereafter. It is the person that matters, not the stuff but some people seem to have their priorities out of whack. (We had a hell of a time after both my in-laws were gone as certain people showed their true colors and it wasn't pretty.) You and your hubby know that you've done all you can. Since your FIL still has his wits about him, it is best to let him make his own decision of where he wants to be. Some people, when they lose all mobility or ability to take care of themselves, can become quite awful to the very ones who are caring for them. Lord knows you don't need any negativity in your life. You need to take care of you. So do what needs to be done for now and then let it go and just breathe. :)

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  15. It's not an easy situation to be dealing with and I really feel for you, especially given all the differing points of view that you've got to navigate through. I'm sending you a prayer for a positive outcome for you all x

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  16. Thinking of you, hope you're able to take some time for you and your husband to look after yourselves as well as Man

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  17. You've been so good. I'm so sorry mean things were said.

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  18. Well, at least there's now some sort of plan in place, let's just hope it all runs smoothly from here on in. Sending you all good wishes.

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  19. Sorry to hear you having a tough time, take care and hope it all works outx

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  20. Well, good advice! Spoken honestly from someone who has been through it. I've been through end of life issues with both of my parents. In my career, I was a probate assistant and your advice is spot on. Hang in there, we will continue to pray for direction and peace. Blessings from Ringle, WI

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  21. Excellent advice and I agree. You are well qualified to give it by virtue of having lived it. Sounds as if the new plan may prove good for everyone. Keeping you folks in prayer.

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  22. Oh boy, I do hope everything gets sorted out and you can start your recovery from all that you've been wrapped up in. Praying for wisdom and peace...

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  23. I am so sorry for what you're going through, taking care of a family member, even when they want our help, is so difficult. Sounds like Man has always been a handful. Let the other brother deal with it for awhile, you and your husband deserve a break.
    We've made wills, but I realize as we get older that there is more than we need to take care of and we will, long before it becomes a problem for our daughter.

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  24. I'm back after a long time and I'm really sorry to hear all those things you are going through.You did your best and this is important.
    Thinking of you
    Olympia

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  25. So sorry you have had all these nasty conversations. It's good things are moving on and perhaps you can enjoy some peace of mind in a bit. Let the other son and social services take their part and perhaps visiting Man will turn into a new part of your lives, where you visit your brother in law etc or visit a different part of the country. May your crafting bring you inner peace and happiness and may you and your husband enjoy a less stressful future as things progress with the house etc. Best wishes

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  26. I'm so sorry to hear that you have been having such an awful time Amy...At least you have some sort of plan now and can start to think about yourselves a little more now. Keep your chin up and keep smiling...Thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers. Debbie xx

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  27. Bless your heart and your husbnad's too. What a mess. As far as the Man, he will soon find out the grass is not greener nearer the other son who I am sure is working and busy with family. My Dad would say things like that , maybe I should move near one of my sisters..... after all I did, it was never enough. But I don't want to go back there so I just want you to take your time. Sorting out the house and all of that is an exhausting project. Be kind to yourself Amy.
    Meredith

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  28. My thoughts are with you Amy. These situations are difficult enough without having to battle with others for the best, appropriate care for the loved one concerned. I hope he is soon settled in the place he wants to be and although not necessarily appreciated you have done everything you possibly could with love and forbarance. Sorting the house will be hard physically and emotionally but hang on in there and focus on what is best for you and your husband. Take care and take time for yourself.

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  29. Oh Amy, such a difficult time, family changes are often difficult and painful and I am so sorry that you are continuing to go through this. Sending continued support and strength, as I ve said before, I am here on the side lines ready when you are xxxx

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  30. Thinking of you Amy...best of luck!
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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  31. I'm so sorry for all the lack of understanding and acrimonious debate in the family. It's so sad to see, and it happens all too frequently. I'm glad to read the extra bit at the end, that things are starting to move. Yes, it's so important to ensure that your own lives are in order before pouring so much energy into extended family.

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  32. Amy, sending huge hugs to you and your husband. Such a difficult time for you. I hope you manage to find peace in this. The hurtful things said, not easy to get past. I think sometimes older people don't actually realise what they are saying is so hurtful.

    Sometimes people seem to think the grass is greener on the other side. Perhaps once there it will be realised that it isn't as easy as it seemed.

    It will definitely be a change and will take a while, but hopefully things will work out and you can put your heart and soul into creating - something you really enjoy!

    Take care.

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  33. I absolutely agree about the will making suggestion, I have seen first hand the destruction that can be caused if there isn't one. Good luck with it Amy, I hope things settle down for you soon. Take care xx

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  34. My goodness, you have had such a stressful time with everything that has been going on. I hope for your sakes thst things work themselves out and you can begin to put yourself first again. Take care Amy. xx

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  35. Hi Amy - Having a catch up with you blog. So sorry to hear you have been having a stressful time of late. Hope everything soon gets sorted. Take care. Joan

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  36. Hi Amy, it all sounds very stressful. I'm glad that you have a solution moving forward. Thinking and praying for you and hubby while you see this last busy stretch though.
    Hugs,
    Shirley

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  37. Hello my dearest Amy! I'm catching up on blogging life again. Been fighting an awful bug and even needed to go get tested for strep throat (and don't have it thank goodness). Anyway, I've been catching up on all of your posts - but choose to comment on this one.

    So nice to get the full update, and I'm so sorry that it continues to be so difficult and kind of a mess. It can never be easy can it? I commend you and your hubby or your endless caring and patience! You have done above and beyond and truly deserve a big pat on the back (& a giant hug!!).

    I hope the other son will step up appropriately and all will work out there and you and the hubby can have a break and a bit of a life now. I know there are still messes to be sorted ...but truly nice things are moving forward one way or another.

    And I could not agree more with your final statements about power of attorney, living will forms etc!! WE took care of those things with my MIL as that was an area I worked in for a long time and knew early on we needed to get them done. It has made "this side" of things so much easier on all!!

    Continued hugs, prayers and good wishes sent to you all my dear Friend!! xoxo

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