Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A challenge of many kinds

Yesterday we took my senior friend to the doctor to get the news we pretty much knew was coming. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. We knew it in our heart but had hope it might be something less awful. She is kind of at the place in the disease where her emotions are numbed so she wasn't outwardly emotional. She is glad there is a med that may help with her memory and sort of slow down the progression. But she seems to have progressed a lot in only the last 3 months. She can still text message but cannot compose an email. She can't pay her bills correctly but can cook, eat, shower and dress herself. This is really teaching me how to live one day at a time.

The other woman who is my co-caretaker used to be her sponsee. (I am her sponsor). We have known each other for years and have liked each other. But she dropped out of Al-Anon years and years ago and has just now come back. Which means she is a newcomer all over again. And has little communication or coping skills. It is very challenging to me to have to "co-care" for our friend. It's like having 2 children to care for. She is still in a lot of denial about all the legal and financial duties we need to complete, along with the somber years of caring for a woman whose disease will become terrible to witness. (One day at a time, though, right?).

So today I decided to practice the 3rd step and surrender. I won't fight her or try to convince her to deal with me in a more effective, respectful way. I am letting go and finding peace within myself. God will sort the rest out.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Getting better

I'm feeling better. Thank God. :)

The anxiety has lessened more and I have more tools to handle it. Every day, a little better. I am so grateful. I have so many friends who have loved me through this, I could never have gotten through this alone. Thank God I pushed myself to attend meetings. I get so much love and support from my fellows.

Despite feeling so down and awful, I've been working on our upcoming Gratitude dinner and my elderly friend Sylvia's issues. The dinner preparations are coming along well, we've gotten a lot of donations to buy the food and supplies we need. So many people are offering to help out, its a great feeling. I am grateful to have this project to work on, it's been cathartic.

We take Sylvia to her Neurologist tomorrow to get the results from her MRI and other tests. We pretty much expect the diagnosis will be Alzheimer's disease. I have been organzing her finances and accounts to get her affairs in order to better have a structured life. She cannot do this anymore. Luckily she has a very good long term care policy that will cover her need for a care taker and eventually a nursing home if that becomes necessary. I dont know why God brought us together but I am intending to fulfill this obligation to her. Even though it scares the pants off me.

Im trusting God. One day at a time.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Moving forward

I didn't realize I hadn't posted anything here since last Tuesday. I open my blog daily to view the blog links on the right side of the page. To read what others are doing. I guess my energy level is still not up to par. Here's what's going on:

I went back to my doctor a few days ago and found out Ive lost 9 pounds in the last 30 days since the depression began. That's a lot. I knew my appetite was dead and had lost some, but didn't realize that much. She increased my level of anti-depressant so that gives me more hope. I had an incredible session of Rapid Resolution Therapy (RRT) yesterday with a good al-anon friend who is a therapist. He offered it for free to help me with my anxiety. I will write about it more in depth soon but let me just say it was amazing and not at all what I thought. You may want to Google it and see what it's about. There is also a Ted Talk about it. It's a unique form of therapy for trauma related issues. It helped me a lot.

Today I have an interview in a field I've always wanted to enter. Yet another Al-Anon friend helped line this up for me. I am amazed at how my fellows are taking care of me. I am so grateful.

I hope everyone has a peaceful, still day of peace today.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The dreams

My therapist asked that I keep a dream journal. Since the depression began my dreams have been very "loud", very chaotic and disturbing. Not at all like my usual slumber activities. So I've been doing this for a week or so and have already observed something interesting. I've had the "I can't find my car" twice, at least, in the last week. It's usually night time in my dream and I'm leaving an establishment and cannot find my car. I walk up and down the parking lot and cannot remember and feel frustrated and scared. How am I going to get home? I'm all alone. All that stuff.  It really is very disturbing. I've had the dream many times before. Always a different venue, but the theme is the same.

So I googled it. Dream interpretation. I found a few different sites that all said the same thing. That it is a "stress" dream. It represents my lack of drive (hence the word drive as it represents my car) in my career or job. Meaning, the job stress that I've endured, the knowing that I've wanted to leave the sick employer for sooooo long but didn't. Due to either fear (for sure) or lack of drive (ditto). So I cannot find my "Drive" to move on to another fulfilling career. This was a big WOW moment for me. I totally concur and found great peace in understanding this. I can't wait to tell my therapist when I see her this week.

I had a dream about my father last night. For the first time in probably forever, it was a compassionate dream. He was raking the front yard of our old house. Most of the dreams of my family are in the house I grew up in. I saw him outside the window and had compassion for him doing the hard work. No anger, no more childhood pain coming out through fear or resentment. In the dream I went outside to speak to him. I barely recall what I said to him, something like "The yard looks good, Dad". Just saying the word "Dad" seemed to be important to me. I am grateful that is was a positive dream. Maybe this means I am getting better. :)

Sunday, October 5, 2014

I AM

As I was washing down my front porch, just after I had begun to clean out my garage the thought hit me. "Two weeks ago I couldn't get out of bed do do anything". But today I was cleaning, heavy cleaning too. I also cleaned the bathroom, did laundry, and did the dishes. Depressed people usually can't rinse a fork much less all the chores I did. It must be a sign I'm getting better.

The anxiety remains, but this time I pushed through it with the chores. I've read that I need to get as much physical exertion and exercise as possible. It did seems to help for short periods of time. I had to visit the dementia friend today to deal more with her finances. She is declining so much that she has overpaid her monthly bills by thousands of dollars. I am cleaning it out for her but it's so overwhelming. Exposing myself to her in my fragile condition is unhealthy for me so I have to do it in small doses. But I did get a lot done. For that I feel good.

I also made some affirmations and stuck them on my wall where I view them many times a day. I am feeling them, to believe them. I have also decided to not speak anything negative about how I feel. I wish to manifest my good health so I will declare it.

I AM WELL. I AM SECURE. I AM HAPPY. I HAVE ABUNDANCE. I HAVE LOVE.

Amen.