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August 16th, 2016

Getting ready for the big trip....

Just in case anyone is actually reading this mess....

Today is the day that we drive Mama Bat back to her hometown so that she can hopefully get checked out and released by the specialists who took care of her in the hospital back in July.  It's an 8-9 hour drive so it will take most of the day and since I don't think Mama Bat will be ready to hit the road much before noon, it will be very late before we get there and I likely won't be able to do any journaling tonight.  Hence today's early morning note.

I've just been downstairs and it's already going to be a bad day.  If you'd like to know about the "internal loop of hell" that I am in, here is an example.  I helped her up and to go to the bathroom.  I made her a fresh cup of coffee.  In the middle of all of this we chatted about how much packing we both had to do and when did we want to get on the road.  She said, she still needed to pack but it wouldn't take long and that she wanted to get on the road as soon as possible.  So I brought her cup of coffee into her room, and I had mine in my hand, and I turned to leave the room.  She said to me, " There's a chair right there, it's not very comfortable but..."  I turned and said, "We just discussed getting packed and on the road soon, and I still need a shower before we go."  Her response?  "I know, Wendy, I know, you don't have time for your mother, just get out!"

Now I know, I could have just sat down for a few minutes to chat with her but what you have to understand is that it's never "just a few minutes," it's always hours that she wants.  She uses "chatting" to avoid doing the things she doesn't want to face or do...like getting herself out of her chair to pack up her clothes. My sitting there would have led to either two things, her yammering on for a couple of hours about what was going on on Fox News, or she would have asked for a string of "little favors"....i.e. could you reach those sweatpants for me and put them into the basket?  Where's my underwear, I need about half a dozen pair? etc....until "I" had done all of her packing for her.  And at any moment that I stood up to leave the room??  Her reaction about my not having or taking the time to spend with her would have been the same.

And how do I know this?  Because it's been this way for about the last eight years only her reaction has been getting nastier and nastier over the years.  And it's been particularly bad towards me with this last bout of illness.  I don't know what's changed in her brain but she's VERY unfocused (most of the time we can make light of this issue) and VERY forgetful (to the point of moment to moment forgetfulness) and she's gotten PARTICULARLY nasty in her attitude and comments.  I wish that I could believe that it might get better but I spent five years working in nursing homes when I first got out of high school and I watched many a negative patient get progressively worse with age and deterioration and I expect that is where my Mom is headed.

What I need to do right now is figure out how to equip myself with the right tools for me to cope with it all so that I don't bottle everything up until I want to stop living in order to make it go away.  This journal is a part of that and I appreciate having the ability to come to this place and pour out my thoughts and emotions.  And I appreciate anyone who is reading and has come along on this journey with me.  Taking Mama Bat to her hometown may end up taking up a lot of the time that I might come online to journal so please don't become worried if I miss a day or two along the way.  Right now the plan is to return home on Friday so you should hear from me late Friday night or early Saturday morning at the very latest, though I do hope to find time in the middle of all of this.  THANKS!!