It’s been such a long time since I’ve posted.  I don’t like to write about depressing things and I feel like all I do is host a pity party these days.  Still, it just keeps getting worse and worse and I find myself wondering who I am and what’s important.  I don’t even recognize my life anymore.

Mom is still dying.  Getting weaker and weaker.  Sleeping more and more.  Even when she’s awake, she’s not the same person she was.  Kind of has this strange little smile and talks about the weather.  Like she’s so out of contact with what’s going on around her.  Every time I see her, I feel like it may be the last time I see her.

And then, there was Donnie’s heart trouble.  I thought I’d weathered the worst of it when he had quintuple bypass surgery and came through it okay.  But they found that spot on his lungs…

He’s been going through all kinds of testing and it just kept getting worse.  Another spot on the artery that sends the blood supply to his left lung.  Then a possibility of liver involvement.  And a brain scan.  A month of everything being on hold.  While we schedule more tests and more scans and see more doctors.

And now, he’s in stage 3 of lung cancer.  Facing chemo and radiation and a life expectancy of a year to a year and a half.  The rate of remission is only 10%.  And he keeps saying, “It’s going to be okay, Honey.  We’ll get through this.”

I’m so confused.  I don’t even know what I’m supposed to feel anymore.  I do my crying in private.  I try to be positive and I feel bad if I even think about a future without him.  But I know I have to think about those things.  We’ve been married since I was 17.  I don’t even know how to be alone.  I’m sad and scared and just totally devastated.  I wander around the house and everything seems so trivial.  Who cares about the laundry? What difference does it make if the dishes are done or the beds are made?  I don’t know what I’m fixing for dinner.  It just all seems so pointless.  I look at the Christmas tree and there aren’t any presents under it.  I just can’t bring myself to go out and shop and look for presents.  I know I should but I haven’t.

5thDecember

A Day to be Proud of

A day of accomplishments.  That’s what I’m aiming for.  I’ve had so many days recently where I don’t think I’ve accomplished a single thing.  Today is going to be different.  I’m going to keep track of the things I do today so I can look at the list this evening and feel good about it.

Retirement has not given me more time to do all the things I need to do.  Instead, it’s given me more time to watch TV, play computer games, sleep and do nothing.  In the past, I usually felt this sense of urgency.  Like I had to hurry up and get stuff done on the weekend or early in the morning because I spent so much time at work.  Now, it seems like I procrastinate with the best of them because, Hey, I don’t have to go to work!  I have nothing but time.  So I waste it.  And nothing gets done.

For starters…I’m going to look at this Weight Watchers stuff.  I have to say, I’m not feeling it.  I went to a meeting on Sunday and another on Monday.  Didn’t go yesterday because I had dinner with the girls.  But, for the most part, it’s come across as a big sales pitch.  Evidently, they’ve just redone their program and gone with something called Weight Watchers 360.  And, in the two meetings I attended, especially the Monday meeting, they pushed the new products.  Buy this, buy that, this product is wonderful, this other product is wonderful, this little thingie is going to help you sooo much, this other little thingie is going to make the program sooo much easier.  And all I wanted was a little inspiration to get me going.  Our first “goal” was to make a commitment to take a snack with us every time we leave the house.  Doesn’t really apply to me. They were talking about how it will keep you from stopping and grabbing a burger or fries or hitting the vending machines and those are things I don’t do anyway.  I just don’t eat fast food.  And I don’t eat junk when I’m out.  I eat it at home.  So that’s one step I’m going to skip.  I know myself well enough to know I won’t eat it anyway so why take it?  For me, I should make sure I have lots of healthy snacks at home.  Cause that’s where I eat.

So, I’m going to put a more positive attitude out there and try to figure it out.  Maybe it’s easier than it seems.  I’m used to counting calories or counting carbs and that stuff is pretty intuitive for me.  This “points” thing…not so much.  And their website isn’t very intuitive either.  I went online and registered and entered my breakfast on Monday.  At lunch, I not only couldn’t find the page where I was supposed to enter my food again, but I didn’t have a clue about how to enter it either.  Homemade soup.  Pretty healthy stuff but I had no idea how many “points” it had.

Today, I’m going to be more positive.  Going to spend some time cruising around the WW site and trying to figure out where everything is.  I think I should probably just stick with some of their recipes, too.  Until I get the hang of figuring out points.

Now, I’m going at it.  Going to have a good day and get a lot of stuff accomplished.  Just wait till you see my list!

3rdDecember

Patty bought Yogurt

And whole grain bread, soy milk and Splenda.  Sounds like I’m back at it.  Fighting the good fight.

I joined Weight Watchers yesterday.  Not something I thought I’d be doing but I realized that I’m in way over my head and need some support.  One day just leads to another, one week to another, month after month, and I just kind of wander around in some kind of limbo.

Things just seem to go from bad to worse these days and it’s really gotten me down.  Mom continues to decline.  She lost her lovely room at the nursing home.  Got dehydrated and had diarrhea so they sent her to the hospital.  She was only in the hospital for a couple of days but they gave her room to the next person on the list.  Faced with finding another nursing home and getting Mom in it, little sister decided it would be best to take her to her house.  She’s doing a great job caring for her but it’s just hospice.  She continues to deteriorate.  We don’t think she’ll make it to Christmas.

DH got out of the hospital after his bypass surgery (quintuple, if you can believe it!) but had to go back for testing because they saw a spot on his lungs and they wanted to check it out.  Turns out he has cancer in the upper left lobe.  He was referred to a lung doctor but the doctor also wanted to check an anomaly around his esophagus.  If the esophagus has a tumor, he’s looking at chemo and radiation therapy.  If not, he’s still looking at having the left superior lobe of his lungs removed.

So, he had the tests done and the heart doctor said, “I removed a portion of an artery in that area for your bypass and I believe it’s just a cyst or blood clot from the surgery.  It’s perfectly round and I didn’t notice anything like a tumor when I did your bypass.  It’s not my call but I don’t think it’s a tumor.”  The lung doctor said, “I think we should do chemo…it just looks too suspicious for me.”  So…we’re waiting for them to call and set up an appointment with an oncologist.

In the meantime, we just try to hang in there and remain positive.

I have to admit, it’s all doing a number on me.  I’ve stopped doing just about everything and stopped seeing just about everyone.  I just hang around the house everyday with DH.  Play games on the computer, do the laundry, clean the house.  And cook.  A lot.  I’ve canned and preserved 6 cases of jellies, jams and pickles. My cabinets and the pantry are overflowing.  It’s my stress relief.  It’s mindless work that keeps me busy and requires just enough concentration to keep me numb.  There are days when I don’t even get dressed.  Just run around in my pajamas all day. And I know it has to stop.  Between Mom and DH, I’ve been dealing with hospitals, home care, serious illness and possible death for almost six months and it’s really taken a toll. I’ve gained a ton of weight.  Everything hurts, my ankles, my knees and none of my clothes fit.

Mom is kind of “out-of-it” these days.  It seems like she’s fairly clear and lucid and then she’ll make some off-the-wall comment that has us all baffled.  She’s used to me dressing nice and looking good.  I went to see her a couple of weeks ago and she looked at me kind of puzzled and said, “Whose clothes are you wearing?”  She couldn’t believe I was in a pair of cheap jeans and a huge tee shirt.  Couldn’t seem to make that image jive with her perception of me.  And I was embarrassed because I know I’ve really let myself go these last few months.

So… I joined Weight Watchers.  I really need some help here to get back on track.  Some kind of accountability.  I guess I should start reading my Weight Watchers packet and trying to figure out how it works.  If nothing else, I’m getting out of the house.  I’m planning on attending several meetings this week to find the speaker and time that works best for me.  I’ll let you know how it goes.