Altered Capacity

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Awesome morning yesterday morning, attending a Leaders in lifestyle, ladies brunch.

Then I headed to afternoon tea for my Mum’s birthday.

I already know that right now I have limited energy but it’s my Mum’s birthday and I don’t think much of it. As I arrive, I see a couple of people down the driveway, I haven’t seen since the funeral.

Hmm… I think, but I quickly moved on my current goal to get Mum’s present inside without her seeing it – I haven’t wrapped it yet, did I mention that poor memory and trouble concentrating has effected me?

Present wrapped, I head to the kitchen helping with plating afternoon tea. I looked outside or a friend of Mum’s comes in, there is a feeling of unease I haven’t yet identified creeping in.

Instead of heading outside to mingle I decide to stay inside and keep helping.

Sometime past, I had to head outside a couple of times to help Mackenzie or take something out. Each time I ran into someone.

“We were so sorry to hear about Matthew. How ARE you?”

Hmm, that feeling was growing. I am too tired for people. I don’t want to meet new people, and by the time I went back inside. I ducked into a younger siblings room to sit on the bed.

I don’t want to talk about the funeral. Talking about any of it is a massive energy drain, not necessarily a bad thing, it just is.

I identify that feeling; I had forgotten, already, that feeling that comes with seeing people the first time since the funeral or since Matty passed.

That conversation can be really difficult for me.

People can say some strange things. Or ask strange questions.

Or even approach me like I’m a pile of jello or something, and just saying “How are you?” will send me into floods of tears or hysteria.

I get why you might think that. But as I have shared before “I’m okay. It’s not as bad as I thought it would be.”

As I retreated, I realised those conversation are hard work and I had already forgotten that I had to prepared myself every time I see a new group of people,

I also reflected on the way “I am so sorry about Matthew” makes me not able to hold eye contact, and look at the ground. It’s because I don’t know what to do with that sentiment.

I reflected on conversations that maybe were a bit easier.

I noticed that the staff at Very Special Kids all without exception used the same terminology,

“We/I were so sad to hear about Matthew.”

That sentence made me relax, It touched my heart.

It mean’t so much,

It mean’t ‘We miss him. We valued having him around, He touched our lives, He meant to much to us.”

Owning their feelings not putting any part of that onto me in expectations of how they thing I am handling things.

I could say “I know it is sad. Thank-you.” Have a hug or talk more about it.

It didn’t make me feel like immediately moving on the conversation, talking about something else.

5 weeks in I feel okay but my energy stores are limited and I have to remember that first exposures are HARD WORK and when I am already tired make me want to hide.

#grief #palliativecare

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