I'm so sad and so very cross.
I've just spent ages writing down my thoughts only to be timed out and lost the work - but that's not what I'm sad and cross about.
Littley had a meeting with one of her people at school today and one of the "cue"uestions (I hate that effing "cue" button) asked was "how tidy is the house?" (God bless her, she said a 10 out of 10), but apparently this is a way of working out if I'm coping or not. Seriously? She doesn't get out of bed walking onto hyperdermic needles, she doesn't trip over Vodka bottles, she has a meal at meal times, she goes to school and out to play in clean clothes, she's not walking through rubbish from one end of the house to the other, but this flags up with them whether I'm coping or not. I would like them to come and inspect the house, the cleaning OCD being one of hubby's "little things". She's devastated.
She told me she was worried that she's going to set fire to the house with her glitter lamp from her birthday. She couldn't understand how water and electric could mix safely and thought that the cable would catch fire, her "bunny" (a soft toy she got at three and has loved ever since) would catch fire, daddy's laptop would catch fire and she would be shouted at by him because of it. I've explained the physics of the glitter lamp and she's not worried about it anymore but I couldn't understand where this was coming from so I sat all three of them down.
It kind of goes something like this...
Littley is upset and worried that daddy is forgetting their names, or mixing them up and that means that daddy will forget who they are. Huge sigh. She said that a few meetings ago with their doctor and nurse the nurse told them that "daddy will go into a home". WTF? (Please excuse my language) Why? Bear in mind these children were six, nine and eleven at the time of these meetings. "Why did they have to tell us this? I was too young to understand" said the now nine year old (like she's any older to understand now). I have had sobs and distress and upset and tears and then some, some of which were my tears. Middley is worried that rather than daddy be put into a home, I would choose to have them put into a home instead. OH MY GOD.
I know this illness is debilitating. I know it goes down hill. I know whatever day we're at is the best we're going to have. Why tell the children this? I have sat tonight for two hours and explained that daddy takes medicine to make him as well as he can be. That I look after daddy to make sure things are easier in the house for him. That I make sure that things in the house are smoother for them too. I explained that I would never, never, ever let anyone take them away from me. That nobody, and I mean nobody would ever take them away from home and put them in a children's home. I promised this faithfully to them - a pinky promise at that. I explained that if daddy gets very poorly that I will still look after him. They asked about him going into an old people's home like the nurse had told them. Littley took my hand whilst sobbing and said "Promise me mummy that you won't let daddy go into a home. Promise me that you will look after him. Promise me. If you can't cope I will help you every step of the way, but promise me mummy." Involuntary tears streaming down my face. I promised that I would keep them safe. I promised that I would look after daddy. Biggey and Middley asked "what will happen if it gets too much for you?". I simply said that I would ask for help, someone to come to the house and help me with daddy so he can stay here. "But that's expensive mummy and we can't afford that". (Tears rolling down my cheeks now).
Why should a thirteen and eleven year old worry about money? Why should they be stressing about daddy needing help in the house and us not being able to afford it? Why should any of them be thinking that daddy is going to be carted off? Why should any of them think that they will be carted off? Why am I being asked by middley if she has anger management issues? She's eleven for Christ's sake (again with the swearing...). I explained to her that she doesn't have anger management issues. I told her that when she bottles her feelings up it's like me shaking a bottle of coke. When there's no more room for these feelings they have to explode out of her like a bottle of coke would and the "fizz" is her feelings. She looked at me understanding how I'd explained it to her and said "I'm more of an Irn Bru kind of girl mummy". You see. The girls have their mother's use of humour in situations that would have you dropping to your knees, just like me.
We continued the conversation with me telling them that they can talk to me about anything, absolutely anything, and that no I wouldn't tell daddy what they've said, it would be between them and I and that I would do my very best to make it better, but that I couldn't do this if they don't tell me. This seemed to work because ten minutes later littley asked if she could have her sausage left over from tea (fingers up to you mrs woman who is wondering if I'm coping with caring for my children) and middley and biggey asked if they could have a ham sandwich.
All is now calm in the Constantly Trying home, for now, and I'm going to go and wash the plates from the left over sausage and the ham sandwiches. Double fingers up to you mrs woman asking "cue"uestions about "how tidy is your house?".