It is exhausting keeping up with our busy schedule at times. I look at my planner and I cringe. I think to myself, “do you really want to open that?” and the answer of course is always, “yes, open it.”
There are some weeks where there’s no room to write a single thing in the little calendar box and there are some weeks where those little boxes are empty. When the boxes are full, there’s more planning to do, when they are empty, it seems a little off.
Yesterday was a whirlwind of a day. Sunday night, Caden did not feel well and he was not his usual happy self. I knew something was off, and when he suddenly got sick, I wondered if he had a bug…
And then when we got home (we were visiting Grandpa and Grandma), he was sick again. And at 11:30, 2:30, 4, and so bad at 5 that he was in the shower almost as early as I am some mornings.
I longed for sleep, but I longed for him to feel better. I cleaned like the Queen was coming to visit, and I started laundry at 6:30 a.m.
I felt so wrong doing that laundry so early…
In the middle of all of that, checking on C, making sure K was not going to get sick, doing laundry, working on grading 43 essays, I got a phone call from the VA Caregiver program.
She called while lunch was on the stove, while I had one getting ready for hitting lessons, and one who was going to reason with me on not eating “that food” for lunch…
I began to sweat.
Ages (okay, maybe months) ago Sam and I filled out a VA Caregiver application. From time to time, Sam needs some assistance from me. I help him with his medication, and some days, the pain in his back is so bad I have to help him out of bed, get to the kitchen, recliner, etc. Because of that, we may “switch” vehicles. I have to remind him to do certain things because of his memory…
Anyway, I finally got a call I was expecting.
And questions that made me sweat like I ran a marathon.
Not because I did not know the answer, but because I did not know if that was the answer the coordinator was looking for. Was I saying too much? Too little? Did she understand that even though Sam works, there are days he needs my help and days where the panic attacks and pain can be so bad he is mentally and physically exhausted?
She asked me about mental health, suicide, leaving Sam alone (like did I feel okay doing that, or did I worry), she asked about our relationship and when we were married.
In about 35 minutes, I told a complete stranger most of my life in the last five years. I barely hit highlights, I covered certain moments, but after we ended the call I realized this woman may never know me, Sam, our family, our highs and lows, and that some committee may never recognize me as a caregiver.
And that’s okay.
I know deep down that I am a caregiver, regardless of what a committee decides.
But I’m not giving up.
Despite all of the chaos between Sunday night into Monday there was a thought of building the best blanket fort ever, but as a mom, wife, and a caregiver, sometimes there is no nap, no option to give up, no break. We push through and we do the best we can in the circumstances that we are given.
I realized that I had a support system (thanks, Dad for the help), and that there were others who were caring for me. <3