February 16, 2011

The waiting game

I sat at my desk for nearly an hour and could not bring myself to type a single word. I have so many things to say, but for some reason, the act of writing them out was making me anxious. pre-bawlingTo be honest, I think I didn't want to write them, because that would make them true. (A recurring theme, I guess, if you'll stick with me for a moment.)

So, I recorded a video blog. And I rambled. And cried a little, then a lot. And talked about my thumbs and how I get rough cuticles when I'm stressed. And wore dizzying horizontal stripes. Nearly eleven minutes later, I finally stopped recording. I'll spare you the video (you're welcome), but I'm keeping it for myself. I'll want to look back on this someday, maybe.

My mom called me last night and updated me on my dad's condition. He had another mild heart attack, brought on by his recent stress. His legs have an infection and while amputation is definitely the last resort, the word has been tossed around and is not completely off the table. The worst thing right now, though, is that his kidneys seem to be failing, and at this point, moving him would put him into shock and his body would shut down.

Right now, this is all a waiting game. We're still waiting for details about my dad's condition - specifically, waiting to see if it gets stable enough that he can be brought back home. My mom needs to work in order to pay her bills - she's totally broke, I gave her all of my tax return money so she could fly down and get around down there - so she can't stay in Florida for too long, she needs to get back to work. But if my dad might not be able to be moved, what happens next? He's already depressed, but now, being down there alone, and with failing health? hammo beach, 2008 maybe?This cannot be good. My mom and his doctors are urging him to write things down - his list of medications, the locations of his important documents, and a will. My father flat-out refused, saying that having a will means that he's going to die. It makes it real.

I'm really overwhelmed with guilt right now, and have been since Sunday afternoon when I first found out my dad was sick. Every time something happens and he ends up in the hospital, I feel guilty. Guilty for taking so many moments for granted. Guilty for moving halfway across the country and pursuing my education and career instead of staying home and taking care of everyone. And guilty for getting to be 345 pounds and not sticking with any of my weight loss plans, because now it might be too late. My first thought is always: I screwed up. I waited too long, and I couldn't get to where I needed to be in time, and now my dad won't be at my wedding. He won't ever meet my husband. He won't ever meet his grandkids.

I blame myself, even though I know that isn't right. My dad has been burning the other end of the candle too - he's the one who had a heart attack and still continued to eat like garbage and not follow the doctor's exercise orders. But the thing is, when he's gone, I'll still be here, and I'll be left with my feelings of guilt and devastation.

I am fighting every self-harming instinct with everything I have. I ate well yesterday - very well, in fact - and I went to the gym for a run and a bike ride. But the memory of how it feels to get high from binge eating keeps creeping to the front of my mind. Especially after Monday's slip, I'm very aware of the fact that it's not a desire that I want to act on ... but it's still there, taunting me. I want to feel safe. I want to forget all about what's going on. I want the comfortable familiarity that comes with being home - and for me, that's almost entirely a food-related feeling.


Ann said...

Keep fighting those urges to binge. You are doing great for the circumstances!! Thoughts and (virtual) hugs from Minnesota!

Jessica said...

I am so sorry that you have to go through all of this. I wish I had more words for you, and in my head, I do. I just don't know how to write them. But please know you are in my thoughts and my heart.

Amy said...

big hugs to you!!

I don't even really know what to say, because this is such a difficult situation to be in. The waiting game is the worst part. The worst part is not knowing what's going on.

I know you probably wish you could just drop everything and be there with him - and props to you for sending your Mom when you couldn't go.

But I must say, don't blame yourself. This is not your fault. Don't feel guilty for going and having a life - and getting an education. You should be proud of yourself for how far you've come.

If you need to vent or anything - you can always email me! Sometimes it feels good to vent to someone completely neutral and outside the situation.

As for the vlog - I recorded about 5 horrible ones before I ever posted the one I just did :)

Shannie (akaSolidice242) said...

First of all I want to I am sorry for everything your family is going through at the moment. I could say a lot more but I know that words aren't as comforting as people think they at the very moment when you are facing such hardship. But I will pray for the strength and health of your family.

Secondly it's never to late to change your life. Feeling guilty doesn't change anything, I am sure your family doesn't blame you for you wanting to improve your life. I am sure it is the opposite they are happy about everything that you have achieved and what you are achieving. Don't dwell on the past, the present is what counts.

Take care...

Jules said...

I am so very sorry...Yes..that guilt can drive you racing to the food...it does me too...worry, guilt, shame, the could have, would have, should have....
And at those times...I write..yes, I too may sit and stare for longer than I want..but it is already REAL..when its in your head...putting it on paper, for me, makes me face it and look at it, but I have come to learn...I can set it aside much easier on a piece of paper than letting it run wild in my head....
Hang in there..My thoughts are with you

Anonymous said...

=( I feel sad just reading this and I won't lie and say that this post didn't make me a little teary eyed. I 100% understand the feelings you are dealing with. My grandfather passed away on Father's Day after my high school graduation. I was in Charlotte for 2 months and I went knowing how sick he was. When he died, I had no way to get home so quick and I missed his funeral. I have carried around a guilt with me since then.

While not the same situation, I get that feeling of "you could've done more.."

The only thing I can say is that you have to live your life for yourself and you've done it, wonderfully. You are changing your life. Your dad had the choice to do so and was urged to do so by doctors but chose not to. You have made a change in yourself to prevent his issues from happening to you. That won't change how you feel inside, but know that you are stronger than these binge feelings. Don't give in, it will only make you feel worse!

Stay strong! I believe in you!

Unknown said...

I'm so sorry, Mary. I just wish I knew the right words that would make everything bearable, but I know that I can't. Just remember that we care about you and are here for you. A road like this is never easy but you're not alone.

Christie Farrar said...

I hope that everything works out for you and yours. You are not to blame for anything, and the best you can do right now, is take care of you, Mary. If you can't be in Florida with your father, you need to take care of business on your end. Shoving food down your gullet in order to drown your feelings will only lead to failing health down the road. The only thing parents want of their children are to be happy, healthy, and better off than they are. And that is what you need to do now. Be strong. But don't drown your feelings, feel them. Brave face, tender soul.