Sunday, December 13, 2009

As Parents Fail

My father has had problems with his memory for the last two years. He had a major surgery right after we adopted TT and he had a very difficult post op course. Ever since then he hasn't been right. I was there for Thanksgiving and I noticed that he could no longer figure out the remote for the TV and that he would sometimes go in the kitchen and just stand there looking at the cupboards as if he did not know where to look for something. It is terrible to see this happening to your parent. Especially my father. He has never wanted to depend on anyone for anything. He had a hard childhood with alcoholic parents and was on his own at a very young age and he never wanted to depend on others. I am not saying this is a healthy way to feel but I know where it came from and I know it is so hard for him to realize that he is unable to do even many simple things now. He cannot write a check, get on the internet, have a conversation without forgetting what he is talking about or run the microwave.
This is made even more difficult because of the dynamic between my parents. My father is a difficult person and honestly I could not have stayed married to him for as many years as my mother has. He can be selfish and can be mean and hurtful. My mother has always relied on him though and their relationship has worked for them. But now she is bitter. Bitter that she cannot leave him for more than a few hours, bitter that he can no longer do the finances, bitter that she has to give him his pills and remind him 100 times to take them, bitter that he can be mean and nasty at times, bitter because he refuses to eat right and he is a diabetic and bitter because he is no longer the man she married. I understand how she could feel this way. I was there for four days over Thanksgiving and I could not wait to leave by then end of our visit. I am struggling because they are both miserable. My father thinks she underestimates his abilities, which may be true and he thinks that she is telling everyone that he is crazy. She is overbearing with him and constantly corrects him and gets frustrated with him which does not help matters. It is a difficult and painful situation to be part of.
I do not know what to do to help. I live three hours away and I have two small children, a job and a husband that travels. We tried to convince my father to move here but he does not want to leave where he has lived most of his adult life. My mother, of course, wants to move here as she would be closer to three of her children and her sister. One more thing for her to be bitter about.
So, I call. I listen to both of them complain about each other. I cry as I think of the loss that my mother and father are experiencing and then I go on with my life. That is all I can do right now. It doesn't feel like enough though.

Friday, August 21, 2009

This and That

This has been a hard summer for farms and our CSA had a very rough start. But, the last two weeks we have received a huge share, especially beans which seem to like the weather we have had. Faced with the deluge of beans I decided to make some spicy dilly beans. There were some beautiful purple beans in the batch we received but unfortunately they blanch green. They did leave the brine a beautiful light purple. These will be a nice treat in the midst of winter.

I managed to emerge from my guilt trip despite the continued heat wave which has made me lethargic and unproductive. Yesterday I took bigguy and a friend bowling while TT was at playgroup. It was a really fun place with neon lit lanes and a huge arcade as well as laser tag. I want to have a grown up night there! I also took the kids to the lake today and we had a really nice day. The water was nice and warm and surprisingly it was not crowded- perhaps others are suffering from my lethargy!!

I know these last days before school are fleeting so I am going to try and make them special in small ways so that they will be memorable. We are going camping tomorrow for the weekend despite the risk of Hurricane Bill skirting the east coast, I am optimistically hoping that the forecasters are right and it will only bring rough surf.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Summer Guilt

I feel summer guilt today. It is 90 degrees, bright and sunny- not a cloud around. It is a perfect beach day. Why guilt then? Well, I just want to stay inside in my air conditioning and read magazines or blogs. I do not like 90 degrees- ever. We just returned from vacation on Saturday and I had to work on Sunday so I also am drowning under mounds of laundry and bags to be unpacked. I have managed to do some of the laundry but other than that not much. I know this weather is so fleeting, soon it will be fall and then winter and I will be dreaming of a summer day at the beach, but I just cannot do it today. There are going to be many nice days this week but we have brief commitments each day that make beach going out of the question. That may be adding to the guilt.
I guess we all need stay at home days to do nothing special- probably do not do enough of that anymore.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Felted Purse

I started this felted purse last winter from a stash of yarn I had bought several years before. Of course I ran out just short of completing the tabs to attach the handles so I had to improvise and cut the tabs in half. Not exactly how I wanted it to look but it works. I cannot even recall what pattern I used to make it. I am looking forward to using it this fall and winter although I in no way want to rush the summer by.
I am in desperate need of a new knitting project, will have to explore my yearn stash tonight and get something going. I tend not to knit too much in the summer unless it is a non wool item.
Hoping to pick blueberries tomorrow-nothing like fresh blueberries right off the bush!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Summer Bounty

It has been a rough vegetable gardening summer for us. We had a very rainy and cool start to the summer and we also battled with animals who found our garden a tasty snack bar. We only have two small raised beds so if they eat two or three plants that is a significant portion of our garden.
But, I was surprised yesterday when I went out to our cucumbers and picked a load of them as well as enough pole beans for dinner. There is something so satisfying about growing your own food and you certainly cannot beat the taste of something just picked. Bigguy and TT both grabbed the fresh cukes and ate them, Bigguy finished off three of them. I used mine in a cucumber sandwich, just a little mayo and salt and pepper-what a treat.
I grew the cucumbers in large pots this year as I had had very little luck in my raised beds. I do wonder why they come out in such funny shapes. They are the pickling variety but they seem to get fat on one end. I will have to try and research this. I am working at the CSA I belong to today and will ask one of the farmers if I see them.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

2 Years !!

Today marked two years since we adopted TT. We first met her on July 30th and the adoption became official on the 31st. All those months of waiting and we were given such an amazing gift.
She is a spirited child whose personality grows more every day. I am amazed each day when she comes up with new words and especially when I catch her singing little songs to herself. Now, there are also the hard moments- like multiple time - outs in a morning for repeatedly misbehaving but luckily they seem to be less frequent. She has changed our lives in so many ways and we feel very lucky to have her as part of our family.
When you are in the midst of two's it does seem endless some days but then I look at bigguy and I think- not 9 years old already. We just celebrated his birthday last week. He is changing so much, becoming so mature in many ways. But, there are still moments , like last week at the zoo when he wanted a stuffed white tiger. I know soon he won't want any stuffed toys but that tiger slept with him for several nights before his sister scooped it up. He, being the great big brother that he is let her have it, but for a few moments he was still my little boy.