I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed lately. There are many parts of life that can stress a person out and at any given time period those stresses can correlate together to cause anxiety and trepidation of mass proportions. I believe that I am currently smack dab in the middle of one of these rare, but inevitable collisions of foreboding uneasiness.
My body is in a constant state of tenseness. But I am not sure if it is physical tenseness and unease or mental. It is always mental, so I will go with that. But then my physical self is under attack. I am forgetting mundane things. I am constantly feeling as if I am in a rush. A rush to be somewhere. A rush to remember something I have forgotten. A rush to have a plan. A rush to be ready for whatever is coming at us next. I can’t relax. I feel a weight on my chest that doesn’t shake. Even if I am not particularly stressed at that very moment. Sometimes, while I am just driving down the road, I can feel as if a heavy load has been placed on my lungs and I am fighting the tightness that surrounds my rib cage and wondering what triggered this unnecessary reminder of my current predicament.
There have been a couple of realizations that have crept into my viewfinder recently. I have realized that at some point in the future, I will have to watch as my children cry, scream, rebel and recoil at the fact they have lost their father. Their parent. Someone who can’t be replaced. Someone to count on. Someone who was there for them from the very beginning. It dawned on me one day that I was going to be the one to hug them (or try to), to listen and to just let them cry. I was watching a movie where the mother was killed. As I watched the father and daughter on the screen, I could only see my two precious kids going through the same process. My mourning will have to wait. Yet, I understand that I have been mourning Jim since the day we first found out he was cursed with this insidious disease.
Another realization: I will have to determine when Jim can’t be left alone. Not just at home. Anywhere. Right now I sometimes drop him off with the kids to practice. He enjoys getting out of the house and loves watching them play ball. But I realized that at some point, I will be dropping him off and expecting the other parents at the field to keep an eye on him or to “watch” him. Not yet, but sometime soon or sometime in the near future. Who knows when? Then I will be forced to keep him home more, or hire someone to be with him. It all gets so complicated.
I realized that I don’t make enough to pay for someone to watch him and pay our regular bills.
I figured out that I will be alone for a very long time. I already feel alone 95% of the time. I am not a loner. I am a people person. It has been so difficult to lose my conversation companion. I am desperate for a connection, yet I have no idea when or if I will ever have one again.
I clearly see Jim progressing. Our friends see it. The kids see it. I sometimes wish we could speed the process up because it feels like torture. Pure torture. Like a single water drop hitting your forehead and then sliding across your face, slowly and unwavering and your hands tied and unable to wipe away the uncomfortable sensation. And as quickly as those thoughts enter my mind, a wave of guilt, unbelievable guilt and shame overcome me.
So, here I am. Wondering aloud how long our family will endure this Hell. How do I stop the constant state of self loathing and complete physical and mental overload I feel 24/7?
Right now, the only thing that really keeps me moving forward, getting out of bed, focusing on anything positive are Frances and Brad. What else do I have? Without them, I would have less worry and would be able to handle our situation in a much different manor. Yet, they are my saving grace. They are my reason for fighting. They are my mitigating comfort in life. It seems that I am in a constant state of capriciousness. Only time will tell how the final scene plays out.