monday

Most of today has looked like this:

I’m really fine with it though. We’ve had a lot of rain lately, but we really need it, so I’m not going to complain. Besides, the rain really relaxes me. Listening to it hit the roof is one of my favorite things. Unfortunately, its stopped now.

I haven’t much felt like getting out of bed today, and only have to cook dinner. I’m still in my pajamas even now. All of that sadness I was so worried about not feeling is starting to kick in, I think. All of the changes being made around here, knowing its been a month. I’ve moved out of the shock phase.

I feel lousy about not getting things done, though. I haven’t done any laundry, I still haven’t cleaned the house. My allergies have been bad lately, too, and considering I’m not going outside, the culprit has to be inside the house. I’m allergic to dust, so I should be able to do the math. Maybe watching Hoarders will make me want to clean. Think I’ll give it a try.

one month

Today its been a month since my mother passed. I’ve been pretty upset all day. I’m now realizing than its been longer than normal since I last saw her. Plus my dad is going through and making so many changes and getting rid of so much stuff. I feel like there’s going to be very little of my mom left by the time he’s done. He’s also moving stuff around so that the house feels different. Its a lot to take in.

Add to that the fact that we’re practically broke. Since I’ve been paying the bills while he’s been “too sick” to deal with everyday household functions, it is now my fault that money is so tight. So add that stress on top of just the stress of the day. Plus, he’s started smoking again. The doctor (surgeon, that is) told him on Thursday that he thought there was a good chance of knocking the cancer out with radiation. We haven’t heard from the radiation specialist yet as to what he thinks the odds are now. A couple of months ago he said aggressive radiation had a 20% chance of  knocking it out, and my dad didn’t want to do aggressive radiation. Not very good chances, anyway. It has shrunk more since then but I would be really surprised if he gave it 100% chance. He’s supposed to see the radiology oncologist on Thursday. I’m tempted not to take him with this smoking thing. How fucking stupid can he be? Complain about money and then go out and buy cigarettes, the LAST thing he should be touching?

I just don’t know what to do with myself right now. I feel so horrible about so many things. There are so many things I should be doing instead of sitting here crying, but I can’t bring myself to do anything. I feel like a rotten sore on my families back. I feel useless.

laziness

I’ve done absolutely nothing useful in the past few days. Well, I did go to the grocery and cook dinner last night, but that’s about it. Otherwise all I feel like doing is lying in bed staring at the clock, the piles of papers, and the stack of laundry that needs to be put away. I have no motivation. When I do feel like doing something, its always trolling the internet. Fail.

Speaking of cooking, it seems like I’ve forgotten how. I got out tongs to flip fish? What was I thinking? Obviously it ended up in pieces. I served nearly raw chicken not that long ago. I used to be able to cook pretty well. I guess after not doing it for so long I’ve lost my confidence. I probably need to cook more to get it back, too. Go figure.

Its been in the upper 90’s here lately. That doesn’t exactly make me want to go out and do things. Instead I prefer to stay in my air conditioned room with my black out curtains. Its no wonder I’m in such a mood. I get no vitamin D. I only go out if I have to, like when its time to put chlorine in the pool. Or if I have to go somewhere. There hasn’t been much rain either. Its shaping up to be a miserable summer.

My dad has made a few changes in his bedroom. He started making the bed yesterday, complete with bedspread. I don’t think I can even remember the last time that happened because my mom always spent the day in bed. Just another sight that makes it obvious my mom isn’t around. Its kind of startling to see. Today he started to go through the months of mail that have piled up over the past several months. I’ve made sure the important bills have been paid, but there’s a lot of other stuff to go through. The piles were kind of starting to drive me crazy, so I guess its a good thing.

Last October I started my A-Z iTunes, where I started at the beginning and planned to listen all the way through the end. I’m about to finish J. Obviously I don’t listen to music every time I’m using my computer or I’d be closer to done. At the rate I’m going though its going to be October again when I finish listening. Maybe if I listened to music and knit, I could get two things done at once, because at the rate I’m going with the shawl I’m knitting it won’t be finished until October either.

fathers day

I went out last night to Smokey Bones, where I usually go when I go out. I’m acquainted with some of the other regulars, including a gentleman named Howard. He’s older than me, old enough to be my dad. I kind of look to him as such. He knows my story, knows about my mom. He asked if my dad would be ok for fathers day. I said of course. I just assume he’ll be fine.

Fathers day has never been a big deal for as long as I can remember. My dad just kind of existed as a paternal figure. He wasn’t a “dad” in the way many describe. He doesn’t care about cards or holidays, so, especially as an adult, I’ve let it slip by the wayside and he doesn’t seem to care. I remember fathers day with unopened cards and little appreciation for the “happy fathers day!” exclamations, so I’m over it.

Being a single mother, I’ve always kind of felt this day was a little bit for me, too. Raising a child on your own is really like splitting yourself into both parents at once. At least it feels that way. Especially with a boy you’ve got to be ready for the rough and tumble side that a dad would usually take on. I’ve never gotten a fathers day card, or any recognition for it. I just quietly think about. Maybe I’m just a holiday hog. Who knows?

What I do know is that last night I had several beers. Enough to the point that Zach came to pick me up. He’d been out with friends. One of them drug the others to a hookah bar, and Zach was none too thrilled. I’m proud that he wasn’t (I sure as hell wasn’t thrilled either) into the place. He was my biggest supporter when I quit smoking, so I don’t imagine him lighting up any time soon. So Zach came to pick me up. At that point I was talking to a random guy and Zach was very vehement that we leave when I finished my beer. He’s very protective of me. He takes care of me in ways he shouldn’t have to. I should be giving him the fathers day card this year. He’ll be a great one some day.

stuff

My dad has been dragging stuff out of well, his closet, to be gone through. A lot of my mothers stuff. A bunch of shoes that had never been worn. She was almost as bad as me. Some of the shoes in there were mine, since they weren’t using the closet space and had room for my overflow. I think my dad is a bit disgusted by the number of pairs of shoes I want to keep. They’re my shoes, for cryin’ out loud. I don’t just part smoothly with my shoes. Its not that many pairs anyway. A couple of the boxes take up space because they’re boots, but its not like one pair of shoes man is using the space! I rest my case.

Sending my mom’s stuff to be donated has been going smoothly. I’ve made peace with the memories I have of her wearing different things. Every thing I pulled out of the closet I could see her in, except for the shoes. She was as likely as my dad was to find one pair and stick to it in her later years. I just hope her clothes go to someone who needs them and appreciates them. There’s not really anything I can do with them. They aren’t my size or style.

Her later years. I haven’t really gotten used to how final that sounds, or how final her death is. I still stop and expect to see her sleeping in her bed. I feel let down that she’s not there. Never coming back is not a concept I’ve made peace with yet. She’s been gone three weeks, but I still just feel like I haven’t seen her for a couple of days, and am wondering how she is. Her cremated remains don’t make any difference either. Hopefully we’ll get the insurance money in the next week or two, then be able to pay off the burial. At least that’s what I’m hoping.

I haven’t been doing anything useful lately, aside from going through stuff for my dad. He knows to set deadlines so I’ll get the work done. I really should do that with myself-make a to do list and set time limits. Things like taking pictures.

I had my camera out today to take a picture for my much neglected knitting blog and dropped the yarn on the floor. I decided what the heck, take a picture. It has no point, no area of interest, but I took it. It was nice to have my camera out just for the heck of it and not just for a special occasion. The 365 project may have defeated me, but I can still take random ass pictures.

I need to go to the store for pet stuff. I need to return something to Target and get some essentials. I need to go to the grocery. I need to clean the house. I need to sort through some stuff to see what to keep what to toss. I need to organize for a garage sale, which probably means finding someone who can appraise antiques. I would hate to give away my great grandmothers furniture if its worth something, or anything of my grandparents.

Time to relax and listen to the rain. We really need it.

time passes

I went through my mothers clothes the other day, mostly because my dad was about to. It was harder than I expected, but I got through most of it. There are still shoes and bags to be dealt with. My dad says he’s going to pull that stuff out of the closet tomorrow. He also promises he won’t throw anything away without checking with me first. He’s acting really different. Normally he would just throw stuff away without asking.

I’m still feeling very tired and confused. I took a long nap this afternoon/evening and I’m still tired. I guess it was time for one of those sleep all day and night times to come around. They catch up with me every once in a while. I think its just general stress that makes me so tired. Either that or my thyroid is way off. I hope that’s not the case. I need to go get it tested, I’m overdue for that.

I really thought I had more to say.

 

guilt

I had a panic attack earlier. I suddenly realized, looking around the room at my grandmothers furniture, that maybe I never properly mourned her death. She was sick, on hospice, so it was no surprise. She was also 92-years-old and had lived a full life. I was with her when she passed, I went through her stuff, I quietly moved into her room. But did I ever really cry over her. Did I ever really feel the loss. Sure, there are times when I wish she was around to answer a question, and I miss her, but did I really move through all of the steps of grief and loss? Did I ever really mourn her death and accept it. I don’t know. Now my mom is gone too. The two women I went to with questions and problems are both permanently out of my life.

I hyperventilated so badly I nearly passed out. Every look at my furniture, which was hers, and knowing that some of her stuff is still in drawers, made it worse. Add on top of that the thoughts of my mother and I was a damn mess.

The truth is, my mother was alone when she died. She was in a nursing home where she wasn’t happy, and nobody she loved was with her when the time came. I blame myself for this. I hate myself for letting her die alone. I could have brought her home sooner, but I thought she was getting the care that she needed.

The truth is, I was afraid to bring her home. I wasn’t confident I could care for her. I didn’t know if I could change diapers and shift her in bed like she would need. Would I be able to get her in and out of bed for meals? I was scared. She was my mother and I SHOULD had done all of this with no question as to whether or not I could. I just should have. I should have contacted her doctor sooner about getting her on hospice care where she might not have to quit dialysis. She had other problems that would have qualified her I’m sure, but I didn’t do what I should have. I thought she would be ok. Honestly, I was trying to get her approved for medicaid so she could stay in that god forsaken nursing home longer while she healed and got physical rehab so she could come home strong. I should have known she wouldn’t make it. I should have known when I saw her that day and she told me she was tired that something wasn’t right. I just feel like I should have known. It shouldn’t have been such a shock.

That’s the tattoo I got in memory of my mom. Its on my right shoulder/chest. I got it done Friday evening, so its still a little sore and swollen. That picture was taken as soon as it was done. I really love it and am doing everything I can to protect it and take care of it. It means more to me than any of my other tattoos, all of which came with a lot of thought. I’m not new to tattoos, and I know all of the stigma’s and whatnot that come with them. I’m glad I got this. My mom accepted me as I am, tattoos and all, so I don’t think she’d mind. In her way, she’d be flattered.

Maybe one day I’ll be able to make sense of everything. Maybe I’ll be able to accept my part in her death, but for now I hold myself responsible for her being alone. I just can’t shake the feeling that I should have gone back to see her, or have known something was wrong.

I don’t know

I haven’t posted in several days. I’ve just kind of been hovering through life with only an interest in sleeping. Maybe I’m depressed. I can’t tell anymore. Sometimes tears well up in my eyes when I think about things but they don’t always come out. Its not very cathartic.

Yesterday we picked up my moms cremated remains. They said I could wait to pick them up until the death certificates came in, which should be tomorrow, but I couldn’t just leave her there. I felt like I spent the last six months just leaving her in places, whether it was the hospital or the nursing/rehab home. Maybe at some point I should have put my foot down and said “its time for her to come home.” Maybe things would have turned out differently. I don’t know. She probably would have still needed the surgery on her leg, though, at that’s what left her bedridden. I just don’t know. I have to wonder if I could have prevented this. Or maybe it was just her time to go. Like I said, I haven’t even seen the death certificate to know what cause of death was yet. I just don’t know, but I feel like I should have/could have done something and maybe she would still be here.

All the way home with her ashes I cradled them in my lap. I couldn’t set them on the floor of the car, or in the backseat. I felt like I owed it to her to hold them in my lap. Now “she” is sitting on my dresser. I’m surprisingly calm about it. You’d think I’d be freaked out or creeped out, but its just like its any wooden box. I didn’t like any of the “urn” urns, so I picked out the same kind of box my grandparents are each in. Maybe that’s why I’m ok. I’ve seen both of my grandparents boxes, so I knew what to expect. I don’t know.

I just don’t know anything anymore. Someone asks me a question and I don’t have an answer. Ask me how I feel, I don’t know. No, I do know. Empty. Everything feels empty and like it makes no sense. I cooked for two last night. That’s the first time I’ve cooked and cut things down so it would just be for two. Do you know how many people recipes usually feed? Four. I only have to cook for two, so I’m going to be doing a lot of cutting down here in the future. Yes, I still have stuff to go through. I still have feelings to sort out. Why isn’t there a how-to book for all of this? I could really use one right now. Something to tell me why I feel what I feel and what I should do about it. Something that tells me why I’m not crying like I feel like I should be. Am I still in shock? I don’t know.

insomnia

I keep having these nights where I just can’t sleep. My head hits the pillow, my mind turns on and my eyes are wide open. I fight to sleep, but eventually end up giving up. I just don’t have the fight to try to force myself to sleep.

So I’m sitting here, 6:14 am, after a long night awake. I did use my time wisely and searched for recipes. I’m going to have to start cutting everything in half. I’m used to cooking for four, and now its just two since my dad can’t eat. Zach and I have been guilty of eating out all the time, but that has to stop because of cost and the fact that we’re both putting on weight. Going in the opposite direction of where I want to be going. I also need to lay off the beer and wine. Talk about empty calories. It could also be contributing to my not sleeping.

My uncle sent me a few pictures from when I was about three. That’s my mom on the left, my aunt to the right. We were at Sandia Mountain.

This must be from when we were driving across the country from California to Florida, before my dad went to Germany. My mom didn’t really age much until she started dialysis. I mean, she aged, but she still looked a lot like the same person. She seemed ageless to me. I’m running out of distractions and am going to have to start going through her stuff soon. My dad’s already doing more that I expected or that I’m almost comfortable with.I mean, yeah, she was his wife, but as far as I’m concerned Mom trumps wife.

Hmm. Maybe I’ll go eat some breakfast and then go to the gym.

proud

I’m so proud of my high school graduate. Yesterday was the big day.

The ceremony was very nice. They had THIRTEEN valedictorians. I’ve never heard of such a thing! With my class there was one. They all gave short little speeches, which were very well composed, some even funny. The principle spoke at length about various student achievements. Seeing Zach walk across the stage to get his diploma (cover) was so exciting. At the end they all threw their hats. I cried. Afterwards we met out front and many pictures were taken.

That evening, one of his best friends moms had made reservations at Kobe. I’d never been there before, so it was quite an experience. Very loud that’s for sure, but the food was good, and there was plenty of it. Zach had a great time, and that’s what matters. There’s another family party tomorrow I know Zach is going to. I haven’t decided yet.

I woke up coughing and sniffling. Allergy meds didn’t make the sniffles go away so I’m beginning to think I may be coming down with a stress induced cold. Other than that, there have been quite a few sympathy cards coming in, which I really appreciate. I went to my tattoo artist and he’s drawing up a memorial tattoo for me. He’ll call when he has a design and then I’ll probably be getting it. Not sure when exactly. Maybe next week. Then my dad also has appointments at the end of the week. Not much to distract me between now and then though.