Can You Keep A Secret?

Mom is coming home. Saturday to be exact. This is good. I am telling myself this is good. But it’s not without some worry. She is moving around but still having challenges getting in and out of bed. She isn’t moving around perfectly but better than she was. The doctors are hopeful if she continues on her phsyical therapy her walking will continue to improve. I listen to Dad say these things. I sound enthusiastic and optimistic. But secretly, I am nervous.

Dad was beginning to have issues taking care of Mom by himself at home before her relapse occurred. I guess I am worried she will return home and all the same problems will exist. My family will have just been put through the ringer for the past month yet will not see any major improvements. It will have been as if we went through all of this for nothing. These are my secret fears.

Dad, Sister K and I are already talking quietly about back up plans. For what we will do if the next week or two are a struggle. If Mom is not as self sufficient as she needs to be. If Dad can’t handle it all again. We may need to bring someone into our house to help. I know that is a reality but it is a tough one. It is also one that won’t happen overnight. It also isn’t something happening tomorrow. But it is sitting there, secretly in the back of my mind.

I feel like I am on a hamster wheel. A giant circle. I go round and round and everything goes back to the same thing. Take life one day at a time. A good friend of mine whose Mom passed away from ALS texted me yesterday and said “Day by day is the only way to do it.” I know deep down she is right.

But I struggle. How do I do it? Do I trick my mind? Shut off thoughts about the future. Shut off my plans. Live today and today only. It is tough. Really tough. I struggle with this everyday. I struggle because of another secret- I don’t really know how to live day by day.  

Have you heard of the expression taking life one day at a time? Do you put up a brave front but keep a list of secret worries? Is it just me or does anyone else not know how to take life one day at a time?

2 thoughts on “Can You Keep A Secret?

  1. Poignant view and well written. As a MS spouse caregiver of 22+ years, obviously I see it quite differently. Skimming through the one thing I cannot figure out is how old were you when your Mom was diagnosed? Our daughter was 18 months when my wife/her Mom was first hospitalized with her first major MS exacerbation. She has never known her Mom as a walking or even able bodied person.

    Caregivingly Yours, Patrick

    • My Mom was diagnosed only 3 years ago when I was 25. In hindsight it seems she may have been presenting symptoms beforehand but didn’t know it was MS at the time. She was 56 and because of her age they didn’t think it was MS but turned out to be. It is an interesting point you make because I have known my Mom both ways-mostly before MS and now after in comparison to your daughter. It has been difficult watching the decline in her health and dealing with the new challenges MS presents compared to our life before the diagnosis. Thank you for reading my blog and for commenting- it means so much.

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