I don’t know exactly why this photo appeals to me right now but it somehow describes how I’m feeling.  Or maybe how I wish I was feeling.

Took John in to his Day Treatment Program this morning and met with his case manager who said to me “the stress of this is showing on you,  you’re not your normal smiling self, I’m concerned about you”.

I don’t know him well enough to tell him I’m on the 4th day of a gallbladder cleanse and should be in bed.  A little TMI there but interesting he should not only observe that but feel strongly enough to share it with me.  Of course I’m feeling about 12 shades of exhausted.

John claims his voices are down but he appears very close to how he was yesterday to me.  At least he wasn’t yelling at me this morning like he was yesterday telling me I’m going to Hell, our whole family is in Hell, his father is Lucifer, I’m an atheist and should believe and asking me “do you care about me at all Kathy?”.  You just can’t negotiate with Paranoid Schizophrenia or personalize it.  It’s a task of staying open and loving and armored at the same time.

One thing I’ve noticed is each time I reach out to hold his hand or hug him he grasps me back tightly.  Poor guy is hanging on for dear life.  We both are.

I heard him say to his case manager this morning “I’m ready to go. I’m tired of being alive”.  I’m sure he is.

I’m hoping that new medication kicks in today as we all know he’s very close to being hospitalized again.

With my father out of the country, me leaving for a week’s trip in 10 days to also be out of the country, this is just not what any of us wants to consider at all.

Vinu, John’s case manager kept reinforcing to me I need to take care of myself.  Schizophrenia, especially when acute like this, is just a black hole sucking everyone in to it.

He expressed to me his own disappointment in John’s relapse and I could swear he teared up himself as I did.  It is disappointing.  Just when you think you’re out of the woods, BAM, there it is again.

This is my life for the duration.

I’m clutching on to what I’m to learn, how I’m to grow from all of this.  And wondering why our family has just been hammered with one tragedy after another.  I don’t know. I don’t understand it.

And today, I’m not appreciating it one bit.

16 thoughts on “relapse

  1. Lori

    Being a caregiver for someone severely mentally ill can be just as exhausting as caring for a loved one who is physically ill or who has dementia. Caregiver have to care for themselves or they burn out quickly. I can only imagine how hard it is to bear the stress when you are physically exhausted too. I hope your cleanse is over soon….and that more light will come for your brother and yourself soon.

  2. jpaulaj

    Our Dear Kathy,

    As so often happens while reading your lifes ups and downs, I’m unable to offer more than my Prayers for you and your loved ones. I humbly ask God to continue to carry you in his cap[able hands. Praying for healing Grace for both you and Alfonse. Please lose yourself in this beautiful song.

    God Bless . . .

  3. Some days I find it hard enough to take care of myself properly; add to that the duties of being a caretaker and you have a good formula for anxieties to be maxed out. Easy to say how we must take care of ourselves or we will not be helpful to others, but it really is much more difficult and consuming than that, isn’t it? I think it is helpful to remember we do not have control over everything that happens, no matter our good intentions. Taking care of what we can control is fine…….leaving the rest to others or fate may be all we can pray for. I know I may not be saying this quite as eloquently as I would like, but I care very much and hope you realize you are doing as much and more than anyone expects.

    Like you, I often wonder why I am faced with one tragedy after another…….. there is no answer. Accept what we can, change what we can.

    Special thoughts and warm hugs for you, KCL. Hopeful thoughts for John, too.

  4. Anita

    I wish I could say something to make it all better, as well. I’m sorry you’re going through another rough period with John and gallbladder issues. I’m keeping you both in my prayers.

  5. Meme Jones

    Kathy, you are an awesome person! I can imagine what you are going through because I am the caregiver for my dad, who is suffering from dementia. We have walked the floor night after night for days without sleeping at all. The hallucinations were horrible!. It is not only exhausting, but scary! Recently, Dad started a new medication that has helped so much. I pray that your brother’s medicine will help him, also. Take care of yourself. I am sending loving thoughts from MS!

    • Special thoughts for you, too Meme! What an exhausting time this can be. Your reminder that it is also “scary” is sort of what I was thinking when I mentioned the anxieties, I just couldn’t put my thought on the right word. You are so right! The “not knowing” what is coming next is also frightening and stressful.

      I am grateful to KCL for this place to share and support each other.

      • Meme Jones

        Thank you, Spellbound. It has been a long, bumpy road, but we are much better right now. I come here everyday to read what Kathy has written. She inspires me to “keep going.”

  6. I know you from WS but never registered

    Kathy: You are one tough/soft – strong/fragile – deep/exposed – soul/heart! You, too, are two people in one and for that are so admired and cared for. And you MUST care for/about yourself….and as you are want to do….often put others first and yourself last. Take only one day at a time. We all CARE for and about you!

  7. John is back from his day program and SO much better. Thank you for all the love and support you guys. Been down for the count all day but did get very tiny amt of chores done. 🙂
    xoxo to you all.

  8. Kitty

    Kathy, I hate to admit that I am disappointed when I do not see a new post from your blog on my email. Today I read it and feel sad and protective of you. John’s counselor is right. You need to take care of you and then you can help others. (as you ALWAYS do) Sending positive energy to you and love and hugs!

  9. Cyndi Wells Platfoot

    You have every right to wonder why? I can’t even imagine how you all have survived these things. But here you are putting one foot in front of another everyday! You are the wonder and why might never come but you my friend deserve peace of mind at the very least so I will be praying for that specifically. Of course I’m already praying for John too!{HUGS}

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