Almost a year ago now, I was asked to submit a blog for Moodscope. Nothing new in that request but I was not in the best place to even think about writing. Lots of reasons, but two major ones: the increasing immobility of Welshboy, my other half, due to his needing a hip replacement, and the impending birth of my granddaughter, after two losses and a difficult pregnancy for my younger daughter. So communication of all sorts was not high up on my list- being there for others was (and to some extent still is) my priority.
Fast forward eleven months and Bethany is a lively, determined (well, she is my granddaughter after all!) and healthy baby who brings so much joy to us all. We all count ourselves so lucky to have her in our lives and are so grateful to our wonderful NHS for ensuring she came into the world safely.
I wish the same could be said for Welshboy but sadly not. He has even more limited mobility now, needing two sticks to walk, experiencing almost constant pain and unable to do much. A recent visit to the zoo where I first saw an elephant meant a concerted family effort, with us taking it in turns to push him in his wheelchair and granddaughter in her pushchair. As a result of his increasing disability the burden of domestic tasks falls to me, with occasional help from our wonderful daughters, especially when it comes to mowing the lawn.
So the reason for writing this blog? Well, I still have very little time for communication, except to a small group of very dear friends who know how disabled Welshboy is. However, I have all but stopped communicating with our wider circle of friends and acquaintances, due mostly to a lack of time and energy, but also for fear of coming across as a “moaner”. Deep down I know they would probably be supportive, but a text to say “let me know if I can do anything” (as my dear sister sent me) is well meant yet meaningless at the same time. The friends who matter turn up on the doorstep and take me/him/us out for a break. And we get precious time with Bethany, even if he has to be sitting down to cuddle her (walking aids and carrying babies do not go together in my experience )
So my questions are - if you say nothing at all, is it better? Should you be upfront with people and risk rejection? (I have a lifelong feeling of being rejected, but that’s probably a blog for another day!). Are you in a similar situation with a partner who can just about do their own personal care but everything else is down to you?
I look forward to your replies.