Thursday, May 28, 2015

You live and learn if all goes well

I have not been writing anything of any substance for awhile. My excuse is that my days are so erratic. Hard to plan and schedule is my big excuse. I have congratulated myself on getting something done in the house each day.

My big problem is concentration. I have to have an undisturbed stretch of time to write.

What I learned this past week breaks my heart. I have a sister with schizophrenia. A beautiful young woman whose brain went haywire in the late stage of development of her late teens. The irony is that she was so smart.

It could have been the car accident where she received a brain injury, it could have been my mother being exposed to measles and getting a measle's vaccine (she did get a light case of measles), it could have been inherited, it could be have been a random strike of nature, it could have been trooping fairies marching to our house one night.

The result is a tragedy. Luckily medication ameliorates most of her symptoms. One of the reasons I take care of her is what follows.

We left a restaurant last Saturday. I asked the family if they had any particular place they wanted to go. She says, "she does not care, but she needed to go to the restroom". We head home.

I have been considering purchasing a home that is going for auction. Of course auctions often go crazy and people pay more than an item is worth. I start to turn off to look again. I set a high price in my head and stick with it at auctions. There is always another deal.

My sister yells at me. She has to go to the bathroom. I say, she needs to speak to me more politely. Well, a dang outrageous yelling comes from her. It is horrible. It lasts awhile. When we arrive home, she storms out of the car. The dogs who rode with us are confused. One wants to sit in my lap to be consoled.

I get a sick headache and take a nap. Or at least that is my excuse. My mother is constantly wanting this, that or the other, and I need some space.

The next morning she wants me to watch her take her medicine. I send her to take it with my mother and tell her I am mad at her. She comes back and tells me with a grin that mom has told her to apologize. I told her the only apology that was acceptable was if she was sincerely apologizing.

One aspect of mental malfunction is the need for power. She is eating it up that she has upset me. I had actually started this a few days before when I complained that I had been stuck in the car with the dogs. My mother loves this marathon shopping trip to hell and back on Wednesdays. I try to go in and help my mother. She has tried her hardest to add a third store. I am so sick of coupons. We waste a lot of money on coupon purchases and excessive storing of items.

During the summer, people look for dogs in cars. We have had people and one time a cop waiting to get on our rumps about dogs in the car while the car is idling, and the air conditioner is on high. With some Dudley Doorights looking to be a hero by breaking the glass to rescue a dog, I like one of us to spend some time in the car.

My sister comes out on a scooter after my mother without making any purchase. I am so frustrated in that I have taken some medication and I needed more water. I complained and this kicked my sister's brain into being defensive. Any negative comment brings out the fight in her. It gets so damn hard being Mary Poppins.

The gist is, my sister is still ornery. But I can see she is worried. Will I put her in a group home? She loves her dogs. She is the big reason they travel in the car with us. Until I got the little squeaks, she was so hard to live with. Now, I can talk her out of the doldrums by discussing the antics of the dogs.

And this is where I feel like a jerk and have learned. My sister just doesn't have that resilience to recognize I have a problem at times or that she should speak to me with respect. She goes straight to in your face nastiness. She does not have the ability to know this is not normal that someone retires early, has no social life, and waits on people.

Why do I do it?

For my mom, I want her last years to be good and long.

For my brother, he is my buddy.

For my sister, they would dope her up to control her and would not treat her well. She has her good days which are good.

I looked at a group home where she could live. For $800 a month, she would sleep on a twin bed in a room shared with three other women. There are about 16 other people all male in the facility. It is a good facility. The problem is I would not want to live there. I can't stand for her to live there.

So I know why the caregiver dies. What I also know are little intricacies of my sister's illness. I have had quiet conversations with my mom of childhood secrets and end of life concerns. My developmentally delayed brother is my friend.

And somehow all of this woke up a creative part of me and I write. I just got to get some schedule going.

A to Z helped me get a focus and brought new life to my blog. Sunday, I will blog about an Asian fashion show that I am videotaping. Hopefully, next Friday, I will post the results of the auction and the future of my blog. Actually, I will start a pattern of blog posts to build my blog around.

Oh, I usually go to antique, animal and junk auctions and buy nothing. This auction is different in that I like the house and plants and we will move into the house. I'll sell the place where I live now. I have difficult neighbors and it is good to reduce what is negative and what you cannot change.

Meanwhile, I have lived another day and learned a little more.


  1. What a tremendous amount of stress you're dealing with. Your family is so lucky to have you. I hope you get the house you want.

    1. Thanks for the good wishes. About the house, I do too. It is a bit overwhelming thinking about moving; but, I know it will fall into place.

      My dad was 75 at the time he told me this. Get used to stress, it is always there. That was close to 20 years ago but he knew what he talking about.

  2. Wow, that is a ton to deal with indeed. You are a mary poppins to be able to deal with everything. No wonder there is little time to write

    1. You have to be Mary Poppins in the classroom. I laugh to myself in that I know some children thought I was mean. It was good to hear them complain. They had no idea how mean the world could be.


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