take care

in the past couple of weeks i’ve hosted my dad, given my grama another manicure and hand massage, and this weekend i will move in with my aunt part-time.  i don’t think i’ve ever been anti-caretaking, but it’s a stretch for me.  i’ve realized this itchy little piece of me that feels very uncomfortable having people in my space or being forced to spend too much time together.  when triggered, i get really defensive, passive-aggressive, and weird.  but as i give it time, it passess.  what i’m learning about myself is that i need to learn to self-soothe, calm myself down, and feel at peace when i’m with other people.  i enjoy my time alone, to be sure.  but the best gift i can give myself is to calm down and find that peace.  and then carve little pockets of time out for myself.

staying with my aunt won’t be physically challenging or hard.  but i’m nervous about moving into this next stage toward death.  before, i could spend a chunk of time and go home.  the chunk is growing to 3 days stretches.  how will it feel?  i’ve seen her get sick, i’ve seen her in pain, i’ve now seen her sleep with her eyes wide open.  but what will it be like all day and all night?  she’s getting closer.  i’ve asked the hospice people the questions, i have an idea about where we go from here.  this may be slow and gradual, or there may be a drastic downturn when she suddenly can’t get out of bed anymore.  what’s that gonna be like?

i’m trying to prepare, mentally.  i’ve notified my supervisors, i keep people posted.  i just can’t help but think that even with all that preparation, this is going to be so shocking, so much different than i imagine.  i will start to imagine different scenarios of death, of the last minutes, but the truth is i have no idea.  mostly i stop and run from the visiualization when i feel that feeling of shock and horror that i’ve felt before as i hear someone has died or see their body.  that, i know, will come.  no sense in pre-thinking it.

so, i’m getting ready to move into my last opportunity to take care of my aunt and i’m scared shitless, i’m wrecked.  but i’m gonna put my body in motion and do it.

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