December 31, 2009
It feels odd to be sitting here writing this on the last day in 2009. This year has been the most difficult of my life and the fact I’ve made it through is nothing short of miraculous and thanks in no small part to the support I’ve received on here. Last New Years eve I was first aiding in York City Centre, picking up those who had enjoyed themselves rather too much. Tonight I’m off to a party at a friends. That in itself shocks me, that I have friends who are prepared, and maybe even want, to spend an evening with me.
Looking back, I wish 2009 had never been. I would like to obliterate this year from existence, to forget all that I have gone through but in some ways that would take away all that I have gained in these last few months. I shouldn’t be here now. Just over 11 months ago I should have died. No two ways about it, and yet here I am. I’m apparently a survivor. A lot of the time I wish I wasn’t, even when I’m up like now I don’t so much want to be alive as much as don’t actively want to be dead. The latter part of January is going to be tough for me, it’ll be one year on and so much has changed and yet so much remains the same.
I started the year very much in love and I end it very much alone in that sense. These aren’t emotions I’m happy writing about where anyone might stumble on them so I think I should just leave that there for now.
So, onwards to 2010 and whatever that may bring. I’m not one for New Years Resolutions, I think the best I can settle for is I hope it’s an improvement on 2009. I wish all of you the very best for the New Year and the next decade, may it bring if not happiness then progress towards something better.
December 28, 2009
I’m still out here and actually doing really rather well given that this includes surviving a family Christmas and a rather more entertaining week skiing! I want to apologise firstly for being such an uncommitted blogger when things are going my way. This blog is meant to be a representation of my life and as such should include the good as well as the bad but when the good is happening I’m less likely to be moping around long enough to actually sit and write something. Nothing’s perfect, each and every day is a battle from the moment I open my eyes to the instant I drift back to sleep but it’s a battle I’m currently winning and for now that’s enough for me 🙂
My other apology is more serious. I want to apologise for not commenting on other peoples ramblings and rantings as much as I should. I know a lot of you out there are struggling right now and I should be there to offer support as you have been to me countless times in the past year. So this is just to let you know that I’m still here and still reading and also to offer an open invitation for anyone that needs it to contact me for a chat via email/MSN/Twitter/whatever. I know that probably sounds horribly insincere/somewhat creepy but I do mean it.
Look after yourselves please.
December 4, 2009
So, I went back, much to the surprise of everyone, me included, and have survived another week. It’s not been easy and I am now completely knackered but I did it without resorting to chemicals (other than those I take anyway + a few glasses of wine) or self-harm. This is a not inconsiderable achievement. What follows are some of my edited high/low-lights.
Things what made me laugh:
- Other carer: Come on, it’s dinner time
Patient: What, dinner again?
Me: Yes, we do have dinner every day
Patient (points at me): Oh, is that why that one’s getting so fat all the time?
- Being asked on a date. When asked where we were going, he pointed into the far distance. That would be the other side of the living room then! But it’s ok, he was paying, I checked…
- The line; “Cor, I don’t half fancy you!”
Things what made me mad:
- Being punched in the head, twice. True, it was by wheelchair bound little old ladies but they can still hit pretty damn hard especially when you’re not expecting it.
- Management bullshit, need I say more?
- Consistent short staffing and the reluctance to make up the numbers because I’m there despite the fact I’m meant to be supernume-ra-ra-y (I cannot say this word for love nor money!).
Things what should have made me sad:
- The death of 2 clients within 24hrs. One of them was in hospital at the time, but the other I’d given a bed bath to not that many hours previously and she’d not seemed particularly worse than usual. Now, I don’t have much experience of death – I’ve seen one dead body and lost a couple of grand-parents but that’s it – so this up close and personal experience should have affected me and I’ve waited for something to come but so far… nothing. No grief, no regret, not even a tinge of sadness. There’s the argument that they hadn’t much quality of life and were possibly better off out of it but I don’t feel happy or relieved either. I just feel devoid of emotion which worries me far more than the deaths themselves. Now I know nurses need to be cynical and hardened to a degree or they’d never make it through the day but surely this shouldn’t have happened already?
Now I just need to get through the next week and I’m done till after Christmas. Then I’m off skiing in France – I’ve never been skiing before and don’t know the first thing about it but I am so looking forward to it that none of that matters. Just got to survive the remaining four shifts….