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28 Dec 2008

Post 92: The typical (ish) family christmas

I have finally come back from Christmas after a week at my parents house (that is as close as I get to a holiday these days) and I have to say that I'm glad to be home because i'm back in my routine 9((exhausting but less exhausting than anywhere else)and because i missed pickle, erstwhile kitten, now fully grown cat. i am one of these pathetic people according to dour, negative bastard Frankie Boyle (therefore one of my favourite comedians,see post 88), seeing as I have so far failed to find love in my own species Pickle helps a bit, she really is a lovely cat .

It has now officially been three years since my stroke, almost three years during which every conscious moment has felt like I'm too exhausted to do anything, even open my eyes.
I was thinking about this on the way back, because people can't understand fatigue and the typical British way to deal with it is to 'just pull yourself together' or the equally unhelpful 'just forget about it' I have been trying to put it in terms that everyone will understand, well, I think I've got it; that feeling you get when you've just woken up and you decide to call in sick (genuinely) and you feel too grim to face anyone or do anything other than stay in bed. That's how I've felt everyday for the last three years, it's no small wonder that I don't come across as the most positive person!
So, back to Christmas, my parents have and do do everything possible to make my stay at home as comfortable and easy as possible but it doesn't seem to matter how hard they try because as long as I feel like this I will always find whatever situation I'm in incredibly difficult. In the amazing rebuilt house they have even made sure all the downstairs doors are 1m wide to make it easy for me to get from room to room without bashing the place up in my wheelchair but this doesn't stop my mum following me around, putting immense pressure on my wheelchair driving skills because making the slightest contact with doorframes/skirting boards/walls would 'spoil everything'. So whenever I go home I'm already under immense pressure. What made things even harder this year is that I'm supposed to be on a very strict (therefore boring) diet and seeing as my mother is one of the finest cooks/hostesses in the world Christmas lunch was bound to be tinged with barrel-loads of guilt, indeed it was but nonetheless it was superb! As was the company, as my whole Uncle Ians family were able to be there pictured at my older cousin Nicky's (now pregnant) wedding in Wales at the end of summer in 2007. I have no current photos as I managed to misplace my camera on day 1 of Christmas, bloody typical but at least it has shown up again, after everyone had left, Argh! My Uncle Ian
(as mentioned elsewhere) really is a character, we think of him as Basil Fawlty without the moustache with swearing. He had us all giggling at the dinner table when he told us that his 29 year old son Danny's main present was 'two hundredweight of coal for Danny's coal burning stove, we thought he was joking but he was serious! Always thinking that man. Scarily, Danny becomes more like him every year, not such a bad thing it may sound but I'll bet Dan is nervous!My other cousins are just great. Nicky has married a great lad and all seems well there,Julie, who is exactly my age, together with boyriend Luke is a great girl and both her and Nicky get more beautiful each time I see them. So Christmas day was enjoyable if a bit exhausting,loud and tinged with dietary guilt but one thing was to really spoil things for me, my Dads drinking. In the evening he must of snuck off for a couple of large whiskeys which he obviously drinks quickly by himself. Unfortunately after this he is completely incapacitated and if he's not comatose and snoring loudly on the sofa in front of a full blast TV then He is staggering around the house, impossible to get one iota of sense from or to get him to do anything safely, perhaps I never used to notice it before I needed his help so much. He'll hate me for this but the only reason I bring it up here is that whenever you call him up on it he swears at you (even when he's sober). This has been going on for years and is unfair on everyone (especially my mum who has put up with it like a saint for far too long), I only bring it up here and now because I need him to be responsible, this is no good for his health which hasn't been the best of late, and without him, our family's f*cked and I know that my mum and I couldn't cope without him, sheesh, am I glad to get that off my chest,I hope it does more help than harm. Thank you for reading this, Christmas is forever going to be tinged with sadness for me but for those that can enter into the spirit of it, for what it's worth, Happy Christmas!

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