Yesterday was one of those days. You know how it is………as the hour’s progress things seem to build up, inner tension worsens, and about all that can be done is to simply try to get by without taking it out on someone else. I can get real short with people if my inner reserves get too stretched. I sometimes get a brittle feeling, sort of like dry taffy pulled to the point of tearing in into two pieces. I know it is just part of the cycle, moods change, energy levels vary, but that does not mean I have to like it. I have learned however that all I need to do is simply wait, and things will change. The trick is not to pop my cork with someone, for after all my ups and downs are my own, no need to share with whomever has the misfortune of being in front of me.
William also had a bad day, so I really had to bite my tongue when trying to deal with him. I was here at the computer, and he decided to pay me a visit, trying to get me to let him out so he could see his family. So about every three minutes, when he forgot what he just said, it started all over again. I suppose it was something like the “Japanese water torture”, one small drip at a time. He was very angry, thinking we are somehow keeping him prisoner (which I guess we are, he is not free to leave) when there is nothing wrong with him; which also in his mind his true. Knowing this, allows me to dip into some reserves buried deep within, to be patient with him. So we do our dance, the Two
Step I guess, around the area, an endless loop going nowhere. He also got out twice, he is good at quickly dashing through the door when someone leaves, but he never gets very far, and we bring him back.
In the early evening, I got him a coke, non-caffeine, and we sat down and watched some TV together. This works sometimes, a way of keeping company with him without the cyclic conversation. He loves football and will often spend some time watching a game or two which is a big help.
The problem with being in a ‘mood’ is that I make everything going on “all about me”, and in my line of work it is always good to try to get a hold on it, and know what I am feeling so as to be able to deal with it. Something I am not always good at, at least in the moment. What is the point in being a caregiver if I allow my moods to dictate how I will treat others? I don’t always know what causes some of my moods, I just know that all I need to do is to wait long enough and a dark mood will surface, wait a little longer and the wheel turns, and something else comes up, now this now that. A comfort of sorts, knowing that my inner weather patters are just that, an ever changing inner landscape, unstable in constant flux, like mist, real, thick, limiting my vision, but when the sun arises and breaks through it dissipates. Slowly, very slowly, I am leaning that I can observe my inner states without getting swallowed up by them. Though I will most likely be dead a hundred years before I get any kind of competence at it; baby steps that’s me.
There is noting more intimate than the relationship between the caregiver, and the one being cared for. The worst, and the best, are brought out, and it is up to the caregiver to seek to remain caring, and also objective, in the many situations that arise throughout the day. Of course there are failures, but that is part of the process, the give and take in any kind of care giving job. I will always be the student learning from my teachers, they being the ones being cared for.
William’s gift to me is simply being William. My ups and downs a gift, part of the process, perhaps the growth needed. Their gift is simply allowing others to try to take care of them, and like any other relationship there will be many windings, and curves in the road, and occasionally a flat tire or two, that will try ones patience.
I still love it.