Just when you think that things are bad, someone can make them worse, you know?
Grandma really is doing awful now....last night she was screaming and crying that "Jesus is coming to take her".....Uncle is struggling right now to care for her as he has the flu as is scared to go near her to comfort her in case she gets the germs, that would finish her off. After a long hellish night of this (no sleep of course), he gets a call from one of the "sisters". Apparently Uncle #2 had told her what went on last night and she called to say she was going to take Uncle #1 to Court so she could see her mother. This is pure insanity. No one has ever stopped her from seeing her mother. She has been "begged" to go see her mother. This is the one who pleaded last year with the doctor to have my grandmother placed in a facility, even though no one knew she was going on holidays the very next day. Does that sound like someone who wants the best for her mom? If she did, she would have been around to help with the transition. My mom calls her and told her how grandma is suffering so much because of the 3 of them abandoning her.....and as always she blames everything on Uncle. Yes, he has said some harsh things to her, but why oh why can they not see that his anger and bitterness towards them come from a 24/7 lifetime of no sleep, a demented mother, no life of his own......knowing he has 3 sisters around the corner. Isnt he entitled to be bitter? Do they really think he wants things this way? So another big argument today with mom and sister. Mom told her she would not want to be any of them and live with what they've done to their mother. Aunt says to mom that she only visits for short times and doesnt know what they go through. Aunt has seen grandma "once" this year. Mom has travelled 3000 miles - FOUR times this year and spends hours every single day on the phone. She could tell you how much grandma slept yesterday, what she ate, how many times she went to the washroom. How dare Aunt say that? I loathe my aunts now.....but I said to my mom, that Uncle should say "Hey, you want to see her? The door is open". Call her bluff! I could care less about Aunt but it breaks my heart to hear my grandma suffer, longing for them. Why can they not stop acting like children and do what they have to do, or for heavens sake, leave them alone and not make things worse. Her anger towards her brother is obviously stronger than her love for her mother.....I wish she would just get lost!
Poor grandma I believe does not have much time left......she has suffered so much....
Oh my. What an awful mess. Why is it that when our loved ones are ok, no one gives a darn about traveling to see them, care for them...no one except those that end up with the hardest job they will ever love...but when dementia/ALZ takes over, now the fighting begins.
This is a nearly impossible idea, Caroline, but what would happen if you just recused yourself out of the situation? You already know that uncle has gone far beyond that which an ordinary person would do. You already know that no one has restricted sisters from visiting. You already know that grandma may be literally going to see Jesus very soon. You know. The fighting will do nothing but make a bad situation ever so much worse.
You can't affect what other people do, say, think or feel. You only have control over what YOU do, say, think and feel. Try really hard to REFUSE to be drug down into the mud over this. You know the truth. God knows the truth. Nothing else matters, does it?
I echo what little deb has said. You cannot change your uncle's determiation to do what he is doing. In facilitating his choices you yourself have admitted that he has said ugly things to the sisters. The sisters have returned those ugly sentiments and feel unwelcome. So many cannot let go of anger for any reason and your family is a prime example. It all become a self fulfilling situation. One barks and they all start barking at each other. Somehow you get drug into the fray.
Know you cannot change any of them. They can only change themselves. Is your angst going to benefit anybody? Is it going to change your aunts or uncles? Is it only going to drag YOU down? "Grant me the courage to change those things I can. Grant me the patience to accept those things I can't change. Grant me the wisdom to know the difference!" Words to live by. Keep your spirits up for the little one to come and the bigger one you have with you now. Don't transfer this angst to a fourth generation. Your Grandmother would not want that.......
The hardest thing to do is to walk away. Turn your back and walk away. Nothing you can say or do is going to change their minds because they aren't listening to you. They don't hear you-or if they do, they aren't listening to the words you are saying. They are so caught up in their anger at each other that they neglect to see the true issue-which is their mother.
We just had a man here who lost his mother. While she lay dying from cancer his two sister were arguing over who should have control of the woman's money. How insane! The true reason to be there was to give comfort and to relish the few moment that were left with the woman who had brought you into the world and nurtured you and gave you life.
How foolish we are as humans to not realise that we need to appreciate those last moments if we are lucky enough to be able to share them with our mothers and fathers.
I had a saying pop up on my calendar yesterday. "What do we live for, if it is not to make life less difficult for others?" I think too often we tend to forget that in the hustle and bustle of life.
But you, my dear, need to shut your ears to it. You need to keep your back straight and your mind clear and calm. This hatred does not need to be brought forward into the next generation. It is not good for our wee one and it isn't good for you to stress about it either. Please just let it go..
There are alot more crazy people out there than our mothers told us there were. We don't need to participate in their craziness. We can recognize craziness for what it is...and move on...MOVE ON dear....
Caroline, dear, easy to say, not so easy to do, but yes, like the others have said, you have to let it go. Nobody gains, and you, mom, and Uncle are probably the only ones who are really caring about her and aching because of it! Of course Uncle is going to be cranky! It's hard enough to have the flu when you don't have to do anything but lay around and let someone else take care of you. I can't even imagine how hard it must be on him to be trying to care for her without infecting her and not getting the healing rest he needs himself!
Those who aren't willing to visit and help out have no place sticking their noses into it! I think you're spot on to call their bluff! There'll be some excuse why they can't come after all! Gotta make it clear, and best in writing, too, that the door is always open for them. Keep a copy for yourself (or uncle)! It may come in handy later on.
This falls under the category of caretaker abuse. I hope your uncle knows how much you love and support him.
Hang in there. One day at a time... Take a long bubble bath with a glass of wine and some Frank Sinatra in the background.
Thank you for all your kind and wise words.....
Firstly let me say to Ibake......it is so wonderful to see you back, we have all missed you so very much.....I was so happy to see your post this morning!!!!
Ladies, I really am hearing you and taking your advice. These situations or "incidents" do upset me to hear about them, but I am learning to let them go soon after. "Accept what I cant change"..as Deb says. I mostly just posted this as an update as to what's going on. You are all absolutely right, I will not let this intrude on my own little family. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving here and I am all prepared with my Turkey and all the trimmings. I have seen the day where I too would have maybe put off anything "enjoyable" because of all the family drama but not anymore. My son deserves traditions....he is 4 years old and deserves a happy family.
As much as mom is still heavily involved in grandmas situation......even she surprised me yesterday. Usually after an altercation with one of the sisters, she is very agitated for a few days, but yesterday she told me she had nothing to feel for her. She has let it go...and knows that there is nothing left between them. She just wanted her to back off and not give Uncle any more problems than he already has to deal with. I know that when the time comes for my dear grandma to leave us, we will grieve not only her loss, but the loss of our entire family because even in anger, she is still the thread that holds anything that is left together, and that will be gone. I am saddened that my son wont know his family, my cousins, aunts, etc. But they are not the people I grew up with, so I will find other friends and family to fill his life with.
Yes, these things do bother me, but I'm trying now to graduate to at least being annoyed, and then its "over".....you all are teaching me that. I am so grateful to know if I step off that path, you are all right there to bring me back. You all mean so much to me.....thank you for sharing your time and invaluable advice with me......
Love, Caroline xo
I agree with Caroline..... welcome back IBAKE!!!!!! Your straight forward manner tinged with your amazing humor has been missed.
Caroline..... you are doing great .... and I am even more pleased that your Mom is following your lead. You are so right.... your little ones deserve better. It is better to have friends and family that bring joy to your life than hang on to those that cause chaos. Life is way to short to spend time fretting with worry
Anybody for applebutter... I have a couple of gallons cooking!
Oh deb does "making applebutter" bring back memories of my Gram. She made the most delicious applebutter in the world. Blackberry cobbler also. Yummm...........Actually anything she made was the best. Country cooking, nothing better.
Well it sounds like everyone has given Caroline the best advice she can get anywhere. The best time of my life was carrying my babies. Don't let anyone ruin that time Caroline.
I have to say I read "ibake and pray" over twice to make sure I wasn't seeing things. How wonderful to hear from her. She has been missed.
Oh yes Deb....I will take some of that Applebutter, sounds absolutely delicious!
Chris, you are right.....I'm going to focus on my "babytime", there is nothing more precious.
You know...I really think I'm learning so much here. I think that your family can hurt you, like no one else can. But as everyone tells me, you have to learn to accept that you cant change them or their behaviour, only how you react to it. As I'm learning this, it makes me realize now that I know this, that if they hurt me, it is because I am giving them the power to do so. If I dont, because I've learned that nothing I say can change them, then they dont win, and I am happier for it. Life is too short to surround yourself with people that cause you grief. These are my life lessons these days.....
I was so proud of mom today.....we talked about her sisters and for the first time she did not get all upset.....she told me she is "done" with letting them get to her. She told me that watching grandma suffer is what has allowed her to "let go" of her anger. Because it has destroyed any longing she had for her sisters. It has allowed her to realize that they are no longer the siblings she grew up with...and so now she needs to focus on grandma, brother and her own family. I am proud of her today.......
Good for your Mother Caroline. I am proud of her and of you. Your kids not only need their mother... they need their grandmother. Hopefully this is the little light at the end of the tunnel which will grow until it outshines everything else. Print your own third paragraph, put it in your pocket, and read it often. You are your best advocate......
Apple butter for all.... I ended up with 19 jars My Mom was the "cook" in the family. Many years ago I realized that she would not always be with us so I set out to learn how to make the "familiy favorites". At Christmas Mom said that she had made the turkey so it must have been almost as good as hers!! My daughter actually ended up with Mom's cooking gene. She's a better cook than I am!
I've got applesauce in the crockpot cooking down to be "jarred" in the morning before I go to work. I put up 6 quarts on Friday and we went and picked 3 bushels of apples today. WHY? I'm not quite sure. I have no children at home to consume, although they assure me that my applesauce is the best-bar none. How that will get rid of 30 quarts is beyound my comprehension. That's OK. It makes great things to put in bags for gifts at Chrsitmas as it seems to be lost art. How making applesauce is a lost art is also lost on me...I gues I must be just lost...I should wear a sign. I am a lost soul with lost recipes. please return me to wherever I came from. Someone must be looking for me...I hope.
Last edited by ibake&pray; 10-12-2008 at 05:48 PM.
Nothing lost about you IBake..... I think you are very found. I understand. Even now, my Mom's favorite story goes this way.......
"I called Deb once and could tell she was busy. I ask her what she was doing and she said she was emptying jars. So I ask her why. !!SHE GIGGLES!!. She was emptying jars of green beans because she was out of jars and needed to can some more green beans." Then she roars with laughter. That was not one of her made up stories.... I really truly did that.
So if you are lost IBake.... then you are lost with me and if we are together we can't be lost
I put up apples first, then applesauce, then apple butter......
LOL...Move over Deb-youhave company...the grapes are turning into raisins in the dehydrator because my children-who don't live here any more-don't like store bought raisins. So I am making raisins for children who now have (at least one does) a child of his own, and does not live here, and doesn't eat here, and was mad at me last week so he doesn't even speak to me here, why you ask? Beats me...but at least they will be done. And when they find me on the street with my sign on, my pantry will look nice and well stocked and my mother will look down from heaven and at least she will be proud. I think. That and homemade raisins taste better and I'm going to hold them over my snotty son's head as a bribe-the little snot.
But when my hubby asks what I'm doing in the freezer, I don't tell him I'm throwing things out, I just say I'm rearranging----yeah, I always rearrange bags from the freezer to the garage bin.......and they say that people with this disease are off kilter....
Last edited by ibake&pray; 10-13-2008 at 09:07 AM.
OMG IBake..... I have just laughed until tears rolled down my face. You and I are definitely sisters. I pleed guilty of "rearranging the freezer". The apple butter is for my daughter who is annoyed at me right now because our political views are not the same. I can't have it because of the sugar content. I will give her half even though she hung up on me yesterday and the rest will be Christmas presents. My hubby uses his garden as therapy and expects me to put up everything that comes out of it.... thus the green bean story Mom loves so.
To get past him I give away all that I can before I process it. Process the rest and give away what I can't use. I have four canning shelves and two freezers in a room dedicated to HIS passion. I have been more stubborn the last couple of years because of the time Mom and Dad are taking. My last good memory of home was putting up corn with Mom and Dad. That is now in my freezer as well..
We have muscadines but how many bottles of wine do we need? Wonder how to deseed these so I can dry them.... hummmm. My brain is churning here
Around here we have a lot of food pantries (lots of unemplyed in the RV industry) - some of them accept fresh produce and all of them accept canned produce ...that would be a win-win solution ... you get rid of stuff, someone gets to eat well. I hope it can be done in your area too.
Holy cow! You two have another sibling!!!! I kid you NOT! I have NEVER admitted that I am a canning or "putting up" freak...and I too have emptied perfectly good jars of food, and I ALSO have a ton of stuff put up that NO ONE WANTS!!!!
My strawberry freezer jam is a hit, but uh...2 pints last a year. The peach freezer jam? I tossed it last night. I made it 2 months ago. Yes, indeedy...I made it, froze it, and threw it out. Why? My daughter said that she like the strawberry better for her twice a year PBJ sandwich. Son said he didn't care. Oldest son that doesn't speak to us will get none of anything, unless of course, he comes over and is marginally decent. So the peach jam is gone, the strawberry jam is stacked neatly in the freezer like the crown jewels, the applesauce is jarred (30 qts!) for absolutely NO ONE, (oh wait. Dad loves my applesauce), the pears are canned...AND I HAVE ONLY ONE CHILD AT HOME!!!
I, too, am a nutbasket. Can I hang out with you two on the street corner with my sign?
(Actually - I think we do this stuff because it centers us. The rest of our lives are topsy turvy, but canning remains the same, doesn't it? I plan to can more, actually)
Okay, I'm a canner, too. My specialties are picante sauce and peach preserve ice cream topping (original recipes). Is there a connection between this and being a caregiver? Maybe it just says something about the personalities that take the time!
There's such satisfaction in looking at the work of your hands and garden. I think it's the same caring for our loved ones. No matter how hard it is, there's still satisfaction in knowing that you're loving them. (Of course, knowing when it's time to put them in AL or a NH is definitely part of loving them.)
I have a sense of relief tonight. I am not alone!!!! Listening to jar lids seal is music to my ears. There is such a sense of satisfaction when you hear that last POP! Emily.... the Blue Atlas should have been a give away. Guess I should be MasonJar. I suspected IBake bake and canned. Little Deb does everything else so why can can and freeze. Yep... I am NOT alone.
Martha, I have tried but here they do not take foods that were preserved, canned, or frozen by individuals unless there are extensive health inspections. In Mom's county you can take your raw produce to a center and they have a canner (metal cans). Then they can distribute it. But we don't have that here. I'm still looking...... New here this year.... If I get an Ag certification I can donate raw produce and that's something I plan to work on for next year. If not.... when hubby retires.... I am giving him a produce stand for a retirement present