Sunday, December 23, 2018

Riding the whirlwind

December 23, 2018

It's difficult to wrap my head around the fact this year is rapidly coming to a close. It's not been quite the annus horribilis HM Queen Elizabeth spoke about a few years ago, but it's not been the best of times. 

My partner in life has had two surgeries on his neck, one on December 14 and one on December 17. He's now in a facility for rehab and he is NOT loving life. For my part, this facility is too close to home. I've been running the road, there and back, repeatedly. It's the same facility my mother is in although she's in the lockdown Alzheimer's unit. Even now I have a collection of items he wants me to deliver to him. And then there's my stepfather - he's in a different assisted living facility recovering from a broken hip.

A caregiver I am not. It's not in my nature. There is multiple staff personnel to see to his needs and yet it's difficult to put my foot down and demand time for myself.

I don't know myself these days. Somewhere along the line in 2018 I lost the plot on my entire life. I desperately want to get it back. I haven't written a word in at least a month. Having the time to write wrenched away from me has left me feeling crushed. Don't they know I can't continue to help them if I'm not given time to do something that feeds my own soul?

I'm not alone in this. People everywhere around the world face circumstances that force them into negative roles. All we can do is put one foot in front of the other and keep going, hoping and praying with every step the burden will ease. And it is a burden.

We aren't supposed to admit that those we love can be burdensome. I've rarely been afraid to express myself, though. It's a burden. 

My best friend moved to Florida several years ago. She calls and we talk but it's not the same. The distance has changed everything and it will never go back to what it was. To declare otherwise would be an untruth. 

Christmas will be a solitary affair for me. To say that makes me sad would be another untruth. Not having to put on a happy face is a relief. Not having to exchange gifts is a relief. Not because I have a "Scrooge" attitude but because I'm simply exhausted by the demands of being a caregiver. Perhaps I should be cavalier and say those nearest have my time and there's nothing more precious than that I can give them.  

There is one truth in all of this. Someday, soon I hope, I will get back to writing. And I hope the emotions I'm feeling will find their way onto the page. That is what writers do. We ride our own whirlwinds and spin them in the direction we want them to go, down into the spaces between the keys. 

KC Kendricks

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