over 7 years
10 years since Dad had a stroke and Mum took her life
I was 21 with high hopes and ambitions when my Dad had a major stroke. Mum was a nurse & had feared he'd have one. Dad along with a panel of three doctors shrugged off her fear - all he needed was extra disprin. Dad dropped to the ground a month later in March 2010 with a massive brain hemmoridge ... this was followed by a stroke in the surgery room once he'd arrived by ambulance. After almost a week in intensive care, we were about to make the heart crushing decision to turn off the machines ... then his hand twitched. This was followed by 3 1/2 months in rehab whilst Mum tried desperately to keep the financials under order & Dad slowly learnt of the loss of control he would have over his livelihood. Mum ended up with chronic anxiety and depression - to the point where she wasn't eating much and couldn't sleep. She kept working night duty though ... working with stroke victims of all! ... and visiting Dad every night on her breaks. The medication Mum was given made her worse. July 21 2010, Mum tied her dressing gown robe to her neck and dropped over the lounge room stairwell. Dad and Mum's sister found her in her last grasps of breath, neck broken at the base of the stairs.
It's been ten years, I still find it hard ... I gave it my all to keep Dad independant. I spent a large portion of the last ten years fighting for Dad's independance. I was his motivator - I was so scared to lose him ... I gave up a lot of my time for him. Now he's in a rest home - unhappy, frustrated. His family do little to support him other than visit him on the odd occassion ... one of his brothers has pushed for him to be in a rest home over independant living. My brother joined him in that battle. My brother is three years younger than me .. he's gone out, travelled the world for a good 4-5 years, come back with a fiancee and purchased a home. Dad is jovial with my brother and complains bout how difficult life is to me. In an ideal world Dad wants me to be his caregiver and live with him ... I've ended up feeling bitter though - I've given up a lot of my time and energy for Dad. I still want to be there for Dad as much as I can for him though underneath it all I feel that all this didn't need to happen - life could have been and still could be better - more fulfilling. I just wish Dad would find happiness & fulfillment with the situation he's in - and have goals... I cherish the borrowed years I have had and continue to have with Dad but it's draining & saps energy I have to get on with my own life & plough ahead. I'm sad when Dad's sad.