15 June 2013
My rather charmed (in retrospect) life was rudely interrupted a few weeks back when i received a middle of the night telephone call and had to head north in a hurry the next morning. My father was in hospital in an acute condition and the expected outcome was, and still is, uncertain. He's out of immediate danger now and is in a rehab facility but the doctors tell us it will be a long hard road of many months' duration and indeed we are coming to see that for ourselves.
I stayed with Mum for twelve days, visiting Dad every day, and trying to help Mum as much as i could while i was there. My cousin arrived and spent a day at the house cooking and filling the freezer with meals for one for when we had all gone home, my uncle picked people up and dropped them off at the airport and drove them to and from hospital and was generally wonderful, and my brother arrived and being a nurse himself these days liaised knowledgeably with the medical staff.
Mum and i had several afternoon lessons on Using the Mobile Phone and Doing the Banking and Paying the Bills. ("Your father does all that.")
I am grateful that my children are old enough now that the prospect of leaving the mister with them on his own for an unknown length of time is no longer a huge stress in itself, and i'm grateful to have a husband who takes it all in his stride and sends me texts throughout the day reminding me i am loved and supported and everything is fine stay as long as you need to. I am thankful that i have work colleagues with whom i can confidently dump my tasks at the drop of a hat. Grateful too that i work for a large organisation that can accommodate unexpected absences and supports its employees to drop everything and run.
I am grateful for wonderful supportive friends who emailed, texted and rang, offering love, support, an ear, and useful advice. Friends near and far cheered me on via Facebook, and ... the lovely craft camp women posted continual Virtual Craft Camp photos for me and for Janet who likewise had an emergency and couldn't make it to the annual Queen's Birthday Craft Camp. They even made a very special and hilarious film for us, which you can watch here.
I have always known that i'm incredibly lucky to be the age i am and have both my parents still around (if far away), but the past three weeks have really brought it home in a new way. Puts things into perspective, really.
I'm still exhausted though, perspective or not.