Ramblings of a ever so frazzled carer...

25/09/2013 17:10

Hmmm. Having vented my everything in the previous post, and feeling ever so guilty for getting it "out there" I've done an enormous amount of housework. No change there then...

I have to admit that I'm feeling an awful lot better for having got my awful ramblings out earlier, even though they make me sound like the carer from hell (and I probably am - especially if you were to ask hubby), but when I started writing my blog I promised myself that I would be honest, and I am sticking to that, even though it's difficult to do and sometimes I have tears when I'm tippy tappying away at the keyboard. Once I've got them off my chest I feel a lot better for it, and surely that makes me a better carer to hubby (in a round about way).

I missed a call from hubby's nurse earlier today and I think that compounded my feelings. Although I'm struggling with hubby's behaviour and temper outbursts at the moment, I'm cross with myself because I feel like I'm failing at the "job" I'm supposed to be doing for him. I shouldn't be getting upset or short tempered because of it, it is afterall his illness. I should be able to take it on the chin, to just get on with it, and not want to get a voodoo doll out (don't panic, I don't have a voodoo doll), and I should just bite my tongue (which I do - but sweet Jesus, I struggle with that one).

I have thrown myself into tidying since writing my "how awful am I?" blog of earlier this afternoon. The house smells of Lemons (God bless that double concentrated Gel stuff that doesn't leak and works wonders) and I've been around with the Jasmine Pledgey stuff, to the point where Biggey went "mummy, I can smell that now - cough, cough". (Note to self, infliciting substance abuse on eldest child is another strike on the "shite mother" list we're ticking off at the moment, and whilst I only mentioned Biggey, it's not that I don't care about inflicting substance abuse on Middley or Littley, they weren't here at the time.)

I've cleaned the bathroom, although scrubbing the shower tray when the shower is on only means I'm going to get as wet as I would have done if I was standing outside, and changed the handwash and thrown out the empty toilet roll. I've made an apple pie and survived Middley chopping the apples without having to do any first aid, and without having to catch any fingers whilst they flew across the room - no thumbs either. I've scrubbed the short pastry from my ring hubby gave me nearly twenty years ago, and yes, I will remember to take them off next time I'm making pastry.

So now I'm waiting for him to come home. I'm forgiving myself for my little (ok... not so little) blip of earlier today, and will do that terribly British stiff upper lip thingy that I've allowed to become a pet lip and will try and drop the self pity m'larky because afterall, there's always other's worse off than yourself. To them I tip my hat. You are amazing. xx



25/09/2013 14:24

I hate it when it's miserable outside. It makes the house feel so dark and then that makes me want to go into hibernation mode - if only.

I got home from cadets last night to an almighty rant. I was led into a false sense of security because he'd rung his friend and was blethering away to him with a happy face and a jovial banter. I made him a cup of coffee and sat down. He came off the phone and blow me, it came from nowhere. I was told I do nothing, the iron is in the wrong cupboard, the cupboards haven't been cleaned (excuse me, I've done nothing but clean cupboards) and what do I do all day - nothing, that's what I do. I didn't even put the iron away. I finished ironing just before I went out so I left it on the bench to cool down. The cupboard hubby put the iron into was the wrong cupboard, it doesn't even stand up in that cupboard, but it was still my fault.

I just let the rant wash over me with no response. I'm exhausted of this hatred at the moment. It's all my fault because I was out for two hours taking them to cadets. I wasn't here. It's simple. He wants me out of the house yet when I am (and it's only those two hours a week) he hates it. He wants me to leave him, but puts obsticles in my way to prevent it. The thought of this being the cycle within the house for years and years upsets me and the thought of him not being here at all devastates me.

Being selfish (again), I feel like this bloody illness called Dementia has robbed us, him, me and the girls. For what I can see, to him his rants and thoughts are rational, he has no emotional grasp of what he's saying and how upsetting it can be. I miss him. We've never been a lovey dovey couple, but we've always known we love each other, shown it in other ways. There's never been any public displays of affection, but there's always been affection. Now there's non. Non at all. I'm alone, lonely even. He ignores me. He shouts, rants, mumbles but it's the ignoring that I hate. It's like there's nothing there anymore, and I mean affection, not him.

I miss the smiles, the twinkle in his eyes, the looks, the "in" jokes we had. I just miss him. I'm here, but I might aswell not be. I'm just the person who tidies and cleans and cooks, and I don't even do that well as so many of the rants are about that.

It's funny because for all his memory fails, he knows exactly what to say to upset me. I've changed too. I'm not the person I was. I don't bite back anymore. I just allow whatever he's saying, because if I interupt or try to defend what he's saying he just starts again. Over and over.

Last night I was going to bed to get out of the way, but he decided to go first. So I stayed up a little longer. Why? It was like he waited for me going to bed to continue the nagging. I should have gone with him because it would have gotten it over with sooner. I get up to his bad mood and I go to bed with his bad mood and it thourighly demoralises me. If I give the girls wrong for something, it's not them that gets wrong from him, it's me. I'm too loud, I shouldn't give them wrong, I shouldn't do this, I shouldn't do that, and all in all it's my fault because they're my girls and they behave just like me. If I let them away with something to avoid getting wrong from him, I get wrong from him because I'm letting them run riot (they don't but go with me on this one), if I correct them I'm wrong again because I'm a "shite mother". They hate me, they can't stand me, they want me to leave, they want nothing to do with me, blah, blah, effing blah.

Dementia doesn't just affect the person with the illness. It affects us all. The thing I get cross with myself about this illness is that it's not just Dementia that I can resent. I sometimes resent him and that's wrong. It's not him that's making him horrid. It's the puppet master, yet sometimes I look at hubby and really, really dislike him. I imagine Dementia sitting in the corner of it's room giggling to itself about how it turns my emotions in on themselves, and how I (a strong person - I like to think...) allow it to. It hasn't just devastated my husband, it's got a hold of me and manipulates my feelings too. Thank you Dementia. They say keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Well if that's the case, Dementia is my shadow, and I bloody hate it.


What is wrong with me?

24/09/2013 11:29

Apologies for my absence. I've been mulling things over in my head. I just don't know where I am at the moment, and it's very unsettling.

The kitchen is done - wahoo. Yet I feel lost. He's been lovely over the weekend, and he went out yesterday to his friend's house. He's there again today. This is where I get lost.

Where has the conversation gone? At least when the kitchen was being done there was a reason to talk, but that's gone and there's nothing. I don't feel part of a relationship now, I'm just here. We've gone. He gets up in the morning, has his mumbles and off he goes. He comes home and there's nothing. Even last night at the tea table it was head down until tea was gone and then up and on his chair. There wasn't even any complaints about tea, which was unusual because it was pasta, and he's not a fan of pasta.

I'm rambling, I know, and I'm sorry (explains the couple of days absence doesn't it lol). I can talk to him and there is no response. Nothing. It's like a brick wall. I'm sure I heard him call me from the kitchen yesterday, but when I got there he didn't know what I was talking about, so I must have imagined it. Am I? Last night I resorted to "what's the best way to get from here to there, my sister's asking" - she was, I didn't make it up, but having to use that as a conversation just felt sad. He spent half an hour on the laptop to prove to me that his original response was correct. It was.

When he's not home I'm a spare part. I'm bored - I'm sick of housework and cleaning. There's nothing on the tv, the dog can only handle so much walking (as can I if I'm completely honest) and the girls aren't home from school till later. I'm looking forward to doing the ironing later - honestly, how very sad is that?

Middley suggested to me that I should tell daddy that I want the car for a couple of days so I can get out of the house (bless her, she is sharp) and then he can have it the rest of the time to do what he wants. That wouldn't work though because daddy wouldn't stick to a rota, he decides as and when and it would annoy him being told "no". She then said, it still wouldn't work mummy. Why? Because daddy doesn't like it when you're not in the house. He looks lost. 

The kitchen had me half way round the bend and back again, but I was useful. When he's not, I'm not useful. He's worrying again about things, and he's looking at houses again, although he said that the kitchen wouldn't be redecorated for another five years, so that was a relief, but he doesn't respond to anything I'm saying and I don't know what he's thinking and it frightens me. He's restless at night time, his leg jiggling up and down, it's doing it at the dinner table. He's rubbing his head constantly, he's tired but he's not sleeping and he just seems to have withdrawn into himself a little bit.

Another thing I've noticed is that he never watches telly. It's crap, there's never anything on it, but the other night he put his laptop down to watch a film that he's seen a fair few times and giggled away at some of it - something he never does. Even if it's the funniest thing on the planet, hubby's face wouldn't let you know, but now there's a giggle or a smile when watching something he'd refuse to watch previously. He even watched Downton Abbey the other night and he refuses to do that, either being on the laptop so he doesn't have to or on the phone so I can't hear it.  It just seems everything is a bit higgilty piggilty at the moment.

Oh. Before I forget, I walked down to the shops last night with Middley and saw a woman walking her cat on a lead. Seriously. I thought I had issues...


What a lovely night.

21/09/2013 16:00

Last night was just lovely. He decided that he'd had enough of doing the kitchen (wonder why?...) and thought he'd get the camera out to try and catch a sunset. He asked me to find out the time for the sunset at Bamburgh so that he might be able to catch the castle with the sun behind it and off we went.

The girls, the dog, hubby and I arrived at Bamburgh and it was just lovely. There were a handful of people on the beach and hubby tootled off with his camera bag and tripod. To be honest, he didn't tootle but was off like a grey hound. The girls and I walked along the beach with the dog and it was just so lovely. There were no foot prints in the sand and the only people you could see were way off to the left and way off to the right. It was lovely showing the girls places that I spent my youth (I used to go there with a friend when we stayed at her grandparent's caravan) and showing them the beach we usually go to way off in the distance (Berwick way) and telling them that the we were at the place we can see from there when we go to our beach.

The water was still warm(ish) for it being the North Sea and they had smiles and laughed and giggled and we got our feet wet and ran about like people posessed. I commented to them that they seemed to be enjoying themselves and that it's the only time that I see all three of them laugh and smile at the same time, and they said yes. It is the only place where they feel like they can run about and shout and be silly without getting wrong from daddy.

Hubby took some photos, not many because the light was in the wrong place, and we had another wander along the beach with the dog off the lead and he ran wild in huge circles in and out of the water and back and forth and it was just lovely.

When hubby had done what he wanted to do he got us all into the car and took us into Seahouses. We parked up and he sent me to get some tea. We walked past shops that I used to spend my holiday money in and it brought back some lovely memories, and things I could tell the girls about. We went into a fish and chip shop and were really lucky as we were the last ones to get served. We took them back to the car and ate our fish and chips infront of the sea in the almost dark, and we're never allowed to eat in the car. It was like the OXO advert when it's bucketing down with rain, and I can't reiterate enough just how lovely it was. The thing that made me smile was when Littley, in the fish and chip shop, said "Isn't daddy lovely mummy?". I asked why. Her response? "For getting us our tea after the seaside". I just smiled and said it was lovely of daddy - even though the money for tea was coming from my purse I wasn't going to tell her that.

When we got home, the girls headed straight off to bed. Hubby and I sat in the kitchen having a coffee and I said thank you. "What for?" said he. "For tonight. It was lovely". "We only went for a walk on the beach Constance, it wasn't anything major" said he. I just smiled at him. It might not have been anything major to him, but for me and the girls it was. It was a lovely something to store away and remember about daddy. It meant more to us than him, but I can live with that.

The best bit of the night was watching him giggle away when he realised how much of the beach he'd left on the sofa at bedtime. The cheeky bugger that he is.


Another day, same kitchen.

19/09/2013 07:53

Yesterday was a stressful day. Infact stressful doesn't even cover it.

Hubby and his friend got started on the splash boards after a couple of coffees. Hubby always works his way into doing things, and I think that the coffees are a way of letting him think about what he's about to do without it looking like he's having to think. On a good day hubby is on fire. Yesterday wasn't really an on fire day. When hubby's on a good day, or has a few weeks to think about something without being rushed he can solve many problems. He used to be able to do this in the time it took to drink the coffee, but not now. Now things are confusing him. Measurements are one of them.

I tried to keep out of the kitchen as much as possible yesterday. It didn't work though. I was in making coffees and lunch and holding boards and picking up off cuts and plastic sheeting and other jobs that needed to be done so they didn't trip over anything. I had spent ages meticulously measuring spaces and board and ensuring that the two would go together and drawing a plan so that hubby could see what I was meaning rather than letting him struggle with trying to imagine it. This went swimmingly until I was out of the kitchen and a measurement was made (not by us) that threw the whole plan out of the window. This sent hubby into a tailspin and I was worse than whatever the worst thing you can think of is.

I just stood there and took the verbal, slightly confused over what it was I was getting wrong for, and kept my mouth shut. It is very embarassing getting shouted at infront of somebody else, especially when you're not wrong and you aren't defending yourself. Ten minutes of getting shouted at and it dawned on me that it wasn't one of my measurements. I looked at hubby and just pointed at friend. There was a moment of realisation flash across his face and he just nodded, smiled at me and held my hand for the briefest of moments. I took that as an apology.

The next rollocking was different, and I can't even remember what it was over - how bad is that? Again, saying nothing I took it until the hands got waved in the air and I was told to get out. "Just get out. Get out of my sight." So I did. I was impressed that he'd removed me from the situation (because he couldn't leave) before he got really, really cross, and he managed this crossness, calming down as soon as he'd heated up. It turned out to be another thing neither of us were responsible for.

I was worried last night about when his friend went home. If that's how awful he'd been infront of someone, imagine what he'd be like without an audience. I couldn't have been more wrong - seriously. Reading between the lines, it turned out that when I was getting shouted at it wasn't me he was mad with, but he couldn't shout and rant at his friend, so I got it double barrels. It got it out of his system, and "normality" resumed.

The two of us sat in the kitchen, stoor as far as the eye could see, on our little bar stools trying to work out how we would rectify the measurement that I didn't make and get us back on track. We did, and we did it between us with no shouting or arguing or huffs, snuffs or tears. It was lovely. We then, both of us, set to work to sort it out, and a couple of hours later we had done it, and it looks lovely, and we both worked together to do it. Normally, in the past, hubby and I couldn't work together, but since starting to bite my tongue and just slowing the pace down, and even saying to him once in a while "you need to slow down, when you speed up that's when you get confused, you spit your dummy out and it all goes wrong", and he listens to that. We'll have a cup of coffee and sit and think about things, even if the same thing is said over and over we're slowing the pace down - he just doesn't realise that's what I'm doing, but it's working at the moment.

So today is extractor fan day. I'm taking deep breaths, and I shall remain calm for the duration (hopefully), and by the end of the day we'll only have the bit under the window sill to do. The light at the end of the tunnel doesn't feel like an oncoming steam train "cue"uite so much ;o)


It's constant.

18/09/2013 13:33

When I got back from taking Biggey and Middley to cadets last night, I might have walked into a sawdust free kitchen (although how he managed it I don't know), but by crikey I walked into a fettle and a half.

I was informed that I don't do anything. Everybody knows it, they're just too polite to say it to my face, but they all say it behind my back and he was just relaying what is said about me - that was nice of him. Isn't it amazing how putting things away makes the kitchen look tidy? Yes hubby, but it's easy to put things away when there's cupboard space for it. Previously things were on the bench because there was nowhere to put them, and that wasn't my fault (or his for that matter), but I do get cross at being told how little I do and how often I do it.

My favourite telling off of the evening was at not having put the bar stool to the correct height when I got off it. I'd put it too high. He then went around all five of them and adjusted all of them to be of the correct height (which to me suggested the other four were out of sync, but I didn't say anything) and was informed that they are not to me moved.

Today, whilst trying to iron and hoover (I'll leave dusting until later, because it's like trying to shovel snow whilst snowing with the dust from the sawdust at the moment) I'm running about holding boards, measuring, making coffee, making more coffee, making lunch, holding boards again, being told I'm effing stupid for having measured the breakfast bar splash back at the measurement he's got it at when it shouldn't be that size (I would like to point out that this isn't a measurement of mine, but one between him and his friend that I had nothing to do with) and trying really, really hard (and I mean really hard) to keep my mouth shut. Even his mate has told him to calm down with me. I'm cross because the sparky that came out yesterday drew a line on the wallpaper for where the new plug was going. The line is about a foot in length and it's only a double socket, but how I'm going to get it off the wallpaper without ruining the paper is another matter. I wouldn't care, but the socket isn't even flush on the line. I'm cross because on the back of him doing this, I'm going to get the blame if the wallpaper is marked from trying to get the mark off. Why don't people think?

So there we are. Another day in the kitchen. Another sodding day. We still have the splashboard to fix to the wall, the glass splashboard to put ontop of it, the extractor fan to go up, the breakfast bar splashback to go on and the edging to trim - so not that much further forward than I was yesterday, but just that little bit closer to the finish line...

Paint on that happy face ;o) x



I'm lost.

17/09/2013 08:44

I don't know where to start at the minute. The kitchen debarcle continues and I see no end. Yesterday we went out to visit his mum and dad, and we ended up looking at splashbacks and extractor fans.

Dear God Almighty. We ended up coming out with a wipe board for the wall (instead of tiling it) and a glass splash back and an extractor fan. When we got home, I meticulously worked the measurements out. I wouldn't have minded if I'd twigged there was a plug that was going to be in the way. Bugger. So then we have to get a sparky out to move the plug along. This is fine. So we sit and hum and haa and hum and haa and measure and remeasure and then measure again and then once more before we remeasure.

Give it an hour and a bit and then he decides that he wants to do the wipe board all round the kitchen. Well not all of it, but 46cm from work surface to top of it because that's where the cupboards end. He decides to go under the windowsill and then continue round to where the new bench ends. My heart sank. I'm trying to work out the amount of extra board that we need and no amount of hubby helping was helping, infact it was just making my head hurt. I came out of the kitchen for a coffee and returned. I said that I thought that 46cm all the way round the kitchen would just be too much, looks wise. There's no need for the wipe board to be where we have the tv, but... and here's where my genius hit me. Why don't we continue the depth of underneath the window sill round to where the end of the new bench ends? Why says he. Well. There would be too much of the wipe board colour if we do it this way, and if you do it with the narrow strip it continues the colour around the kitchen without it being in your face and would be consistent, and the bonus would be that we would use a lot less of the board than doing it the other way. Bingo. I left him to ponder it, and today I'll let him think it's his idea, but last night I don't think I could have taken any more.

Two cupboards were taken down last night and one was moved to the other side of the kitchen. One needs to be shortened to fit in the space under the bench, but when putting the mugs and things back into the cupboard I found a mug I forgot I had. On it is photos of the girls. I looked at the mug and just cried. The pictures of the girls are of them all smiling, happy, excited, looking how children should look. It just made me cry because they were taken before any of this nightmare began. It was like being slapped in the face with a wet fish.

I actually left the tea dishes for this morning (they're all done now, and put away lol) but I just had to get out of the room because if I'd stayed in there, he would have and it would have been more numbers that didn't add up, and more numbers in different measurements and I've measured it, and added it up and no amount of it being remeasured will give a different outcome. The tape measure is permanately attached to his hand and we're using it all of the time, and I mean all of the time. I loved that little tape measure. It was in a tool kit that my mam bought me, but I'm starting to loath it. The little click of the measure snapping back into it's housing before being pulled out again to double check the number that we've already checked.

These jobs that we're undertaking, without me realising they're coming, are taking days and days and it's frazzling him. He's tired but won't stop. The numbers don't make sense and the thought that he's going to cut out board just fills me with dread. The board isn't cheap and I can't afford for there to be any mistakes. He says that he wants to sit the plugs into the board. This would mean cutting the plug shape into the board - more measuring, and not tied to be accurate. I said that I thought that if the plugs sit on the board that it would give a better finish look wise. Hmmmm. Another idea he might have this morning. Last night he mentioned that it might be better if he gets someone he knows to come in and do it because they would have it done in less time. I was honest with him. "I think you're right sweetheart. I'm not trying to be cruel, but the numbers are confusing you and if you have to cut things out the pressure of getting it wrong is just going to upset and fry you." I didn't get shouted at. I didn't get any insults. I just got a small smile. His eyes shone. It was as if he was saying thank you for noticing and rubbing my face in it, and for letting him get someone in to do it so that he doesn't have the pressure.

All in all it's been a bit of a rough week, but hopefully when the kitchen is finished (again) we can have a bit of a rest from this DIY m'larky. Even if it is just a week before he starts pulling wallpaper off. 



Day off? Don't be daft.

15/09/2013 14:54

The final bit of trim went on the boxing in the cupboard last night.

He didn't like how I'd organised the shelves, and I was making hard work for myself by having the rest of the cupboards organised how I had and I had no idea how to utilise space, and he'd organise them when he got up this morning because he knew I was going to do it wrong anyway, and "no, I won't show you how I want them done now, I'm going to watch how you do it, and then tell you where you've gone wrong" and I just lost the will to live. Anyhoo, it gave me the incentive to do it anyway - just to piss him off, I know it's the wrong attitude to take, but I really couldn't have cared less last night. It's been a hell of a week with this kitchen and I just wanted it to be over. He got up this morning and he's more than happy with the cupboards, except for my cookery books - he'd have them turned the other way round, so he did, and I let him. The comment "Although why you have cookery books I don't know, it's not like you ever cook or bake" made me bite my tongue.

He went out yesterday to cut grass and came home with a pancake pan thingy. His sister had told me that he'd been to the Salvation Army place, and my heart sank. I've been emptying cupboards and clearing things out, and I just knew that he'd come home with something, and he did. So this morning I made pancakes. "Use the recipe that's on the pancake pan thingy's box, because I've never liked your pancakes". Never liked my pancakes? Bloody hell, he certainly manages to pack away a lot of pancakes that he doesn't like, but again, bit my tongue. "These are better than your pancakes" was the high praise I received after his third one, so it's the recipe I shall use in future. I have found a home for the box of the pancake pan thingy so it ended well.

Today is meant to be a day off (what is a day off I hear you ask... Well. I don't know.) Whilst hoovering and dusting and cleaning the shower and dusting the skirting boards he's had me hold the tape measure (how I hate the tape measure) up against the kitchen window trying to work out whether this blind or that blind from the lovely people at Argos would fit. Now to me it would be easier to take the measurement of the window and then match it to whichever blind he's looking at, but nah. Why? We'll take the measurement from the blind we're looking at and see if it fits the window. About four attempts later and we have one that fits and I was to order it. "I've sent the reservation number to your phone hubby" says I. That went down well, no, it really did. He was happy with that. He asked me for a shopping list so that he could get some provisions whilst in the land of the shops (never before have I been asked for a shopping list) and off he's tootled. Dear only knows what extras will come home from the land of the shops, but it only adds to the excitement of putting the shopping away...

The girl's fettle is a bit of a mixed bag today. I think it's because hubby has been a bit uppy downy with his fettle. He's either been lovely or he's been shouty (more of the latter) and it's confusing. A friend of hubby's popped round yesterday to see him, but he was away cutting grass. He said he was pleased to catch me when he wasn't home because he hasn't been able to chat when hubby's about, and phone calls are a pain because either hubby's here with me, or there with him. I asked him how he found hubby at the minute and he looked at me and said he's noticed a difference. His moods are a little bit unsettled and he's either up or down. He mentioned that he's repeating himself a lot and he just wasn't sure how to respond to this. I simply said that if hubby is having a moment and loses his temper and starts to shout that he should let him finish his shout. If he doesn't it'll either make him more cross or he'll start the shout from the beginning. When he's repeating himself, just pretend it's the first time he's heard it because saying that he's already said it will just upset him because he obviously can't remember saying it previously and it won't help anybody, him or friend.

I must admit, when he left I had a bit of a weepy moment. It's one thing noticing these things myself, wondering whether I'm imagining it, noticing things that aren't there or if I'm looking for things, but when someone else mentions that they've noticed a difference it makes it real, and that's another little decline. It's just cruel this illness called Dementia. Unkind and cruel.

So whilst he's away getting the blind, I think I might go and look in a cookery book I don't need, to make something that I don't make so he can have it when he gets home :o)


Watching an Octopus getting into a Snail shell.

14/09/2013 11:08

The shinannaghans that are going on in this house are getting to the point of being a sitcom - if we haven't already reached that point...

We started placing the shelves on the brackets at 10am yesterday morning, and at 10.30pm last night I told him he had to put his tools down. Bear in mind that he only stopped for lunch (about 12mins) and for tea (about 22mins) and the rest of the time was work in earnest, I was ready for bed at about 3pm.

The shelves were put in, and looked amazing. That was it done - so I thought. He then had some pipes to box in, and don't tell me that didn't throw a cat into the pigeons. I suggested something, he disagreed. I suggested something else, he disagreed. Our neighbour came in (God bless him - it was like walking into the Lion's den) and he listened to hubby, and listened to my suggestion and then said "Now don't bite my head of here "hubby", but I'm going to give you my two penneth worth and it's up to you if you listen. I see what you're saying "hubby", but you've done such a good job so far, that doing what you're planning on doing will spoil the look of it and it would be such a shame when you've done such a great job. Why don't you try this?... (enter my suggestion in a different mix of words) and then it will look as good as your shelves." A minute or two of hubby scratching his head and our neighbour's idea was the bee's knees. Neighbour and I looked at each other. He winked and I mouthed "thank you".

So the boxing of pipes began. The wood was cut, the saw was lost, it was found again, the screws and drill and workbench were used, the floor was covered with more sawdust, the silicone gun was moved out of the way, the spirit level was checked and then decided to be not working, the back up spirit level was used and decided to be the one that was working, and he worked away like billio and the job was done. The pipe work was covered and it looked amazing. Our neighbour went home for his supper and said he'd see him this morning.

When our neighbour went home hubby decided he'd tidy the join in the wood with edging. He measured it out, he cut it and the two of us held it in place for the silicone to set and hold it where it was meant to be. We gave it a little while to set a little (and had a much needed coffee) and then shut the door. Bugger. The edging meant that the door didn't hold it's catch. Dear Lord, how evil in a previous life (or even this one for that matter) have I been that we can't even get through putting shelves up and boxing pipes without so many major hastles along the way?

"Is your phone charged Constantly?", I said it was. "Put the light thingy on it and I'll have a look" so I did. What I hadn't realised was that hubby was going into the cupboard (with the shelves and the boxing in place) to see what it looked like on the inside whilst the door was shut with me holding it in place. OH MY GOD - it was like watching an octopus trying to get into a snail shell. Give him his due, he managed although the oxygen level in there must have been halved by his 6ft 6" frame cramped into a 1.5ftx1.5ft space. He could get onto Britain's got Talent with this skill. He went in arse first, with his legs being cowped behind him and then his arms folded around his legs. I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it. The only thing that disappointed me was the fact I didn't have enough charge on my phone to take a picture of him (gutted).

I put the light on the phone for him and then he told me to close the door. The evil streak in me (there it is - that answers my own "cue"uestion earlier) did think about leaning on the door and just not moving, but I didn't, that would have been cruel... He shoe horned himself out of the cupboard and we sawed a little bit off here and a little bit off there and then closed the door. We propped the door shut by screwing a screw between the door frame and the door and left it. It took half an hour to clear up the sawdust and the shed load of tools and anything else that needed to be put away and I suggested we went to bed because I was knackered.

The response to that? "I'm too hyped up now, I can't go to bed yet, I need to unwind a bit. Go and put on Emmerdale and Coronation Street and I'll watch them before going to bed." PPPPPFFFFFFTTTTT was my thought. The house was freezing because we'd had the kitchen door open and loft hatch open (don't ask) and I hadn't been allowed to have the heating on, my nose didn't feel like it belonged to me and even letting the dog snuggle in didn't warm me up, he was just as cold (maybe should have put the camouflaged top on the dog, but I'm not that cruel) and I had to sit and watch Emmerdale, then Coronation Street whilst wanting to go to bed because hubby can't use the remote to find the recordings and seeing as how there were three episodes of the two programmes last night I told him I'd stay up until the third episode started and then I was going to bed. He was happy with this. I was not. I went to bed and fell asleep almost instantly, and was woken by hubby when he came to bed and I must have been on his side. Well I wasn't, but I was too far across for him because the dog wouldn't have been able to fit in the middle of the bed with me how I was sleeping. Woken up and shoved along hubby and the dog got comfy and I went back to sleep. At 4.30am hubby got up for the loo. Hubby never used to do this, he was like a Camel, but now he does. So that was me awake from 4.30am until we got up. I pretended to sleep so I didn't have to get up at 4.30am because we would have done if he'd realised I wasn't sleeping, but I eeked it out until 7.30am when we had a coffee and started on that bloody cupboard again. I'm not allowed to put anything in it until lunch time and I'm not allowed to start until he's vetted where I'm putting anything, but I mentioned that that would mean I couldn't do anything today because he's going to cut a friend's grass, and I suggested that maybe I could put things into it, but if he didn't like it I could change it. He agreed.

So I'm now waiting for the time allocation to come around. I might have a cup of coffee in peace before I crack the whip and get on with the monumental task, but I can thankfully say, for the moment, that I think the shelf/cupboard debarcle is over. The only thing that made me cringe was him mentioning wallpaper for the bottom of the stairs - but I'm going to let that one tip me over the edge another day ;o).


Day Five in the Constantly Trying house.

13/09/2013 08:03

Wey man it's day five in the Constantly Trying hoose and things are lookin' unstettled. Hubby is gan t' finish the shelves the day and Constance is gan t' try and keep oot the wey.

Lordy, yesterday was a wierd day. I knew mam was coming up yesterday, but he didn't. She made out that she'd just popped up the road to visit the butchers (seriously?) and that she wanted to go and get some honey (even more seriously?) but she came laden with meat and vegetables, and eggs so that was fine. Hubby was happy to plodder about and even sent me with mam to go and get some honey. "We'll have lunch at 2pm" said he, "I think you'll be back by then" and we were.

I came home to find a painting in the living room that should have been in the hall way. I asked him why and he bent over his work bench giggling. Sigh. The reason he'd moved it is because he'd pushed too hard on the drill and the screw came out on the living room wall. Bigger sigh. He was so giggly and laughy about it that I said nothing, but honestly, if I'd so much as scuff a skirting board with the hoover I get hell to pay.

I made lunch and he stopped what he was doing. It was a lovely day yesterday and because the kitchen was full of tools I suggested we went and sat in the garden and had a picnic lunch. I wasn't expecting him to come, but he did. Hubby and my mother have always had a rocky relationship, and I'm not sure why. Since the diagnosis they've gotten on better and better, and he sat and blethered away to her and it was like seeing old hubby. My mam has commented on how hubby is more like he was when we started going out together twenty years ago (wow), and that this is the best they've gotten on and she finds that staggering. I have no idea why it is, but I'm not knocking it because for a long time it was very difficult and hard work and took the pleasure out of little visits like yesterday.

Instead of hubby getting straight up to go back to the shelves he had another coffee, nattering away, and had a cookie I'd made earlier (chuffed with these because there's no butter in them, and they were delicious. I'm definitely going to make them again.) and he nattered some more, and another coffee and he enjoyed the sunshine and he just seemed to relax. Eventually he went back to the shelves, but he'd had a rest without realising that that's what he was doing.

Mam went, and he even commented on what a nice afternoon it had been, especially since she brought provisions lol. He went back to the shelves and I made tea. We stopped long enough for him to eat it, and you've guessed it, he went back to the shelves. I tidied the kitchen up, doing the dishes and putting them away and we were both allowed to sit down to watch Emmerdale.

He's decided that he wants a bit of marble to lay on the bottom of the cupboard beneath the shelves. That way I can store vegetables in the cupboard and it will keep them cold. Good idea, but where I lay my hands on a slab of marble is beyond me (research later). My cookery books are in the living room, waiting for their new home on the shelves inside the cupboard and he picked one up that was an engagement present. He started to read recipes, telling me what "looked handsome" and commenting on what expensive ingredients were needed for the recipes and how he'd make some Farmhouse Pate. He couldn't get all of the words out right and some of the mispronunciations made me smile (not laugh at him), but then he started to do a funny noise before saying things wrong. It's a funny one to try and explain, but it was like a clearing your throat with your mouth closed kind of noise. I thought he was pulling my leg but he did it a couple of times. I didn't mention it to him, because that would have put him on the defensive and upset and annoyed him, but he's never done that before.

Today we have the shelves to finish, but I'm not rushing him because I think he's had enough and if I don't push him it'll get finished. If he gets worked up it will either be left or it'll be with a paddy and God only knows what the end product would be like. The best of it is, when people see what he's done they'll all fawn over it (justifiably so) and go "see, there can't be anything wrong with him if he can do things like this". What they haven't seen is the stress and the arguments and the paddies and the bloody hard work it's taken to get it done. 

Today I'll have to research marble. Maybe Gumtree has some on... ;o)

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