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!
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
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!
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!