Caregiver for Elderly Mum - Feeling Desparate but Grateful for the Little Moments
My mum is in the last stages of COPD.I have been a carer for her for over 8 years now and have been with her throughout.
My father suffers from severe mental illness. My brother also lives with us and my sister lives with her partner less than 3 miles away. I have always been the person to step forward and make things happen, everyone else seems to coast along and be less pro active.
My mum relies on me and trusts me. I work full time Monday to Thursday and sleep in the room with my mum of an evening as she is now scared to sleep alone. She hasn't slept with dad for sometime as we had to move her to the main living space in the house that was a dining room. This way was easier for her to get around and us to help her more.
I look after her from Friday to Sunday often bringing extended family members around for a roast dinner on a Sunday if she can manage it. She has a large family and it keeps her spirits up to see other people and not just us.
Now my mum is at the end stages or even the 'last days' of this disease. The disease is very unpredictable, one week I think she isn't going to be here tomorrow and then others I think she will be here a few more months even 6.
I have let everything else go in my life, I have no real friends as they have faded away over the years, I do little other activities and I'm on a mental and emotional roller coaster.
I'm so tired!
I am starting to get really angry with my mum and have been angry with my siblings and father for some time. I feel like I have to ask permission to leave
the house, they just get up and go when they want. The rule seems to be that when I'm in everyone else is free to leave.
I am a really independent person who needs my own space, even when I'm upstairs trying to recharge my batteries someone calls me to asks something ridiculous. I don't want to be this angry and negative person, it's not me.
I sometimes wonder when she will die, I hate this, she is my best friend even before this horrible disease we have always been so close. I know I don't mean it but its torture just thinking these things.
I'm lost, lonely and emotional. My nan died of COPD related complications. My aunty looked after her. Then my aunty died of it more or less alone right after looking after my nan, she was in a similar situation to me for years. Now my mum. I an 40 next month and smoked for 20 years.
I have given up a year next week. I am scared that I will be the same as my aunty and spend 10 years of my life caring for someone just to get it and die alone. I would like a little life to live myself.
I only find strength in exercise, meditation, trying to eat properly and my small cover band which I'm trying to hang on to with both hands. I am trying to relate to something spiritual but have no belief in a god what so ever.
I do get some comfort in thinking that the universe has its plans for us and that we should be grateful for those little moments that many disregard or don't even notice, like the robin who sings to me through the kitchen widow everyday. I do love my mum, I just feel a little desperate at times, today being one of those times.