Am I 'there' enough?

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Am I 'there' enough?

Hello everyone, new here.

 

Mum was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer (not a smoker) in August, and after chemo, and now immunotherapy, hasn't worked, we're looking at a bit of a tough few weeks/months ahead - our only hope at this point is a drug that costs $14,000 a month, which we can't afford, and are working towards some type of subsidy/exception to get the drug at a cheaper cost.

 

Due to painkillers etc that Mum's on atm, she's pretty much 100% dependent on someone being there with her all the time as she's quite frail and at times very out of it due to the pain killers.

 

Both my parents are elderly - Mum's 70 and Dad's 74 - and to be honest Dad's struggling a bit at the moment and it's affecting the environment they're living in, as he's getting overloaded/stressed and quite uptight and stressed and Mum's pretty much over the pain/what lies ahead atm.

 

We're currently accessing paliative care, and are in the process of organising some form or respite care, for both their sakes, but I'm just wondering (selfishly) if I'm doing enough to help from my end.

 

My brother and his family live 600kms away so can't be there (no fault of theirs) and while mum and dad are recieving very frequent phone calls from friends and relatives, in terms of being there in their home, there's nothing during the week, which is overloading Dad.

 

I work 8am to 6pm most days during the week, but have been spending roughly 9am - 4pm each Sat and Sun at their house to relieve dad/help mum. Just wondering based on others' experiences in here, if I should be doing more during the week?

 

I call each day in the morning during the week, but tbh I don't visit during the week and am starting to feel very guilty. I've made it clear that I'm avaialble whenever they need me during the week via phone, and when needed can help with dropping off at medical appointments etc, and my workplace is very supportive, but just wondering what others are doing in this situation? By the time I finish at night, mum's pretty much ready for bed, and I've avoided popping in on the way home from work for that reasion, but bit worried about dad.

 

Part of me wonders (the guilts again!) if I'm almost glad that I'm working during the week as it's a bit of a distraction....

 

Anway, any stories/advice from others would be appreciated.

 

Ben.

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Re: Am I 'there' enough?

Hi Ben, unfortunately there is no right answer to that question, but the fact that you are asking it shows that you have good priorities.  I can sense your guilt right throughout your post- unfortunately natural too, but always yuck.  It may be helpful to remember that many people can provide physical care for your parents, but only you can be their son Ben.  Whatever you can do to enhance the relationship you've always had with them is really valuable.  Your well being is also important at this stage, as it will give you more energy (physical and emotional) to care for your parents (whatever that ends up looking like for you and your family).  I wish you lots of good luck.  love and hugs, Emily

 

 

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Re: Am I 'there' enough?

Hi Emily,

 

Apologies for the late reply.

 

Thanks for taking the time to respond to my message and thanks for pointing out that a lot of the concerns I've raised are natural in these situations.

 

While I hate that so many others in this forum are going through this or worse, particulary when young people or children are suffering, it's somehow comforting knowing (even though I knew underneath) that others are in the same boat.

 

I hope everyone struggling takes the same comfort and help from this forum.

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Re: Am I 'there' enough?

Hi Benny, I agree- my husband finished his chemo nearly 7 years ago, and I'm still getting encouragment and value from belonging to this forum.  I hope the weekend is good for you.

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