Photo Copyright: Maggie May
Pressure seemed to be mounting this week as I had to meet so many deadlines such as child minding, appointments and doing practically all the household chores by myself because it was time for Harry's chemo again. It is the fourth of ten sessions and what with the effects of that and the Hydrocephalus of the brain, the two together seem to exaggerate the symptoms and I have felt really weary coping with this. The Hydrocephalus affects Harry's spacial awareness making him trip over easily. He also finds it hard to work problems out and to carry out finicky tasks accurately. Chemo also has similar affects although this is temporary. The Hydrocephalus symptoms are not.
If it wasn't for the chemo, he could have a drain put in his brain to relieve the pressure, but obviously nothing like this can be done whilst undergoing chemo, so we find ourselves in a chicken and egg situation.
When Harry was actually undergoing chemo this week, my sister in law rang him to say that Larry, his twin brother, had collapsed again and had been taken back to hospital. Harry came back via his hospital transport in quite a state and was not able to cope with all this worry and the effects of chemo. I was a bit irritated by this, to say the least.
I seem to have spent ages on the phone to Rhoda again and Larry collapsed again in hospital the day after. It has been put down to a virus, but I think there is more to this than meets the eye. So this has caused added stress to the family.
Today was a sunny day even if a bit chilly and I felt I needed to get out by myself. Millie had been collected by her dad after her Friday night sleepover and she'd had her bath and hair washed and I managed to get her hair into a new style that my friend Audrey had shown us how to do. I gave Harry his lunch and decided to leave the house not knowing where I was going to end up.
I walked to the park and noticed that the tree that I'd snapped last May, was still wearing its knitted graffiti though it had faded a bit. The park keeper must have accepted it as it had been left on the tree. I sat on a sunny bench and soaked up the mild rays of sunshine. My skin hasn't had very much of that lately as I haven't always managed to get out when I've noticed any.
I do feel guilty when I feel like this and everything gets on top of me. Don't get me wrong, I like to be fairly busy and have the grandchildren, help with Brownies etc....... however, its the illnesses and sudden bad news and unexpected demands that cause the problem. I guess I do like some time on my own and find this helps counteract stress. I also read and knit.
I have read two books recently that I couldn't put down. One was Pandora's Box by Giselle Green and the other, No Child Of Mine by Susan Lewis.
When they are here, our granddaughters practice their knitting and are getting a bit neater...... though they keep handing me their needles to rescue a stitch that has dropped or to sort out why they have additional stitches because they picked up a loop by mistake. Sometimes they knit so tightly that they can't get their needle into the stitch and I have to knit a row to get it right. I do think it would be good if they became proficient knitters though. So few people seem to be able to knit these days.
Sometimes we do cross stitch together and they have made some lovely bookmarks that they have given out to various people as presents, who I hope cherish them after all the hard work that they put into their project.
When I get a chance I find knitting for the local premature baby unit is a very relaxing thing to do and someone else benefits too. Walking has always been my biggest stress buster in the past and it is such a pity that I can't walk anywhere near as far as I used to do, nor leave the house for very long because of Harry's needs.
What do others do to relieve stress?