Missing familiar.

For the last three days, I’ve been consumed by so much emotion. I don’t want to feel like this, but emotion doesn’t ask for your permission before it takes hold. I seem to cry so easily right now, this just isn’t me. I miss my mask. I miss my bravado. I miss my ability to put on a brave face.

Lou flew to Cyprus over the weekend. I’m infamous, within my family, for being that over-protective Mum. It’s the first holiday that Louis has had without us. Poor Hats has had to endure her pathetic Mum’s anxieties, with the holidays she has had with Al. Once I know the plane has landed, I’m okay, sort of. Yesterday, Lou and his girlfriend’s four and a half hour flight did my bloody head in! Normally, I could distract myself, but my life doesn’t seem to be my familiar and normal right now. Hats and Al knew what I’d be like, so Al was tracking their flight. Love my son-in-law (unofficial). He really has been there for me through all this. I feel so much closer to Al than I used to be. He has seen my days of struggling and it has definitely brought us closer. Even typing this, it sounds ridiculous and pathetic that I was this anxious yesterday. But it’s my truth. My parents’ situation has made me even more protective of my family. Now I know that Lou and Rosie are there, I can relax about it. My feelings of insecurity seem exacerbated since Dad’s stroke.

Today, I feel so heavy with my thoughts. I phoned our Key Worker and she was again my sounding board. My parents have a mental health assessment on Wednesday. Do I need to be there? Should I be there? Is it better if I’m not there? Our Key Worker is phenomenal and really seems to understand me. She gives me direction.

Last Tuesday, after taking my parents to Taunton, I felt this situation was too big for me. I love my parents so much, so to witness my Mum shouting at Dad in a public place, really cut deep. If an Enabler had taken them out, they wouldn’t be emotionally attached, so it wouldn’t have affected them. My parents have been the most loving and connected couple throughout their entire married life. I have an incredibly positive view of marriage because of their example. On bad days, when Mum is frustrated with Dad’s confusion, it really does hurt me to see it, because it’s not familiar. (I need a new word!)…. The life I’m accustomed to. Things that are well-known to me. Habitual processes… Sod it! My familiar!

On Saturday, both my parents seemed mentally good. Dad was tired, but he seemed less confused. As they sat in our living room, I kept looking at them and thinking it was like old times. Afterwards, we all said how good they seemed. These good days are lovely to see. They can also be dangerous, as they can give false hope. I want to believe that my Dad will slowly return to the old Dad I’m familiar with, this would be amazing. However, I’m told to “accept” and be realistic. I am realistic, however, acceptance is a tricky one to master. The difficult and confused days, sadly, outweigh the good ones.

Talking to our Key Worker today, I’m just so desperate for answers. Answers give me clarity and vision. Right now, I very much feel I’m walking through this dark wood, I cannot see any light. This just isn’t me. I’m normally a positive person. I know this lack of light is due to a lack of answers. I need to know what the big picture is for both my parents. My job hangs in the balance, and for how long?

When life has been tricky in the past, I’ve always turned to my incredible parents for wisdom. I find I ask myself what my parents would do in my situation. I know they would do all they could to find clarity, and try and make life a little easier. They’d be scrambling through the woods, determined to find the answers.

As I took a birthday present to a friend this morning, he asked how things were. I explained, and then he said “It’s a part of the circle of life, they’ve looked after you your whole life.” This resonated with me so much. I feel such a bond with my parents, they’ve always been my foundation and support. This circle of life means I get to repay their love and support. It’s just not an easy path right now.


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