Have you ever swum too far and bobbed up and down in the water going under now and then? Have you ever looked towards the shore and thought, it is just too far away, and I will never get back? This has been a year of more downs than ups so far, and even though I banished all thoughts of new year resolutions, the one I did make, to find reason to smile and laugh no matter what the year tossed at me, has been somewhat difficult to keep. I seem to have been caught in a riptide going out to sea.
The Commonwealth Games have come and gone, a whole school term has done the same, and I am 4 months older since last I posted a blog. I seem to have taken up permanent residence in doctors waiting rooms, or hospitals. Geoff collapsed in the middle of Feb at work, and 2 weeks later had his aortic valve replaced in Oxford. He will be off work till the end of May. Mum was supposed to be in Switzerland helping Marge and Peter with their home and dogs once the new restaurant opened, and they needed my help too, but I simply could not get there. Mum had health issues which took ages to resolve and now I am finally having to admit I am not superhuman after all. The spirit may be willing, but the body is shutting down.
David turns 17 tomorrow, and heaven help us all, will be learning to drive. I have no idea how time has flown by so fast. Today I had a visit from my goddaughter, Paula, who I last saw when she was about 4. She is a stunning young woman, 26 now and a physiotherapist from New Zealand, and all of a sudden, I feel old! All around me are friends who are battling with medical dilemmas, illness, parents ailing, and reversal of roles. I spent a week helping to look after a friend's dad who has Parkinsons and Alzheimers, and I remember so well, how hard it was to look after my Dad, and all the guilt that comes with making decisions we would rather avoid. We all have ideals of perfection you know, and precious little chance of ever reaching them. I am certainly my own harshest critic, and with that comes the guilt and the sense of failure and futility. Responsibility, unrelenting, can have devastating effects on us.
BUT........................................ It is now April. A new month, and the optimist in me is anticipating spring and sunny days ahead, an easing of the stress, and healing. I am going to New Zealand in September, and I will get to Switzerland to help in the summer. Andrew, Ann and Mum went today and are sitting in Engelberg as I speak. I will get there soon. And the smile is back, even though at times it is a little wobbly.