Wednesday, August 15, 2012

summer of 2012, trips and goals... I'm not my best cheer-leader.

OK, I *have* done fun things with my kids this summer. They cannot (but will) say that it was a pretty boring summer. I took them to "action park" (a small amusement park near where I live) by myself. Then we took them as a family to Haifa for a vacation in a nice hotel with beautiful mountain views. I got sick with a stomach virus when we got there, though, but I still managed to go to the beach one day, and then I got better by Shabbat (in the hotel). After I got through with the virus, though, Robert got it with a vengeance. Then it was up to me to take the kids out sight-seeing in Haifa, which I did. We went on a cable car up the Carmel mountain, where Haifa sits atop. We walked along the beach shore. We went to the famous Bahai Gardens, and even went down a fair amount of steps (if you are me) down into the gardens, then, of course, back up again.

In short, we went, we saw, I accomplished. Oh, and I forgot to say that because Robert was really sick on the day we had to return home from Haifa, I had to take the kids out to dinner, and drive the whole way home. Now, for anyone, this would be a considerable challenge. I tell you, though, by the time we actually got out of the car in Be'er Sheva (some 6 hours after leaving our hotel), I was in excruciating pain. Yes, that bad. It didn't help that the hotel's mattresses were terrible- my bed is wayyyyyy better than those. (I actually have an awesome mattress, thank Gd, considering how much time I spend in it).
Btw- just for documentation sake- my right hip has started to hurt more than my left. It means two things- one is that the surgery (6 months ago) on my left hip seems to be working pretty well. The other, of course, is that the impingement problem, already diagnosed in my right thigh, is catching up with me.

I spent the main part of the two days after Haifa in bed. I was even too tired (and depressed, but I'll get into that a bit later) to open my blog and write.

But I did all that stuff.
And today we are headed off on a southern route this time- toward Eilat, at the tip of Israel. I want my children to have good memories of the summer.
We will be on the Red Sea instead of the Mediterranean ocean. We are going only for a day and a half, basically, and staying with friends of ours on a nearby kibbutz. We had wanted to leave earlier, but Robert was still getting over the virus, and he was pressured about getting the taxes in, and I was in bed, too tired to do anything.

At the moment, Robert is at the income tax bureau, and we are planning on leaving in a few hours.

OK, I did lots of stuff.
So how come it feels like I still failed?

Leaving times, meeting times, basically *any* times are totally un-reliable with us. Well, with me. I feel that *I* am the problem of the family. If you are someone who has to deal with making arrangements with us, we will probably wind up apologizing because we threw you off with our lateness, or caused you frustration.

I cause my kids lots of frustration because we seem to "waste" lots of time before we actually can get out for the day. The main problem there is that I sleep late.

Can I just say here that ***I HATE THAT I HAVE TO SLEEP SO MUCH***. Robert never wants to wake me, so the day drags on and on waiting for me to get it together. He couldn't go to the tax bureau in the morning because he wanted to let me sleep (I was feeling sick at night), and he had to take care of all the kids. He couldn't get anything done.

I think what depresses me is that I don't understand why I am like this. I am not sick.
I know you are all probably raising eyebrows now and wondering how I could say such a preposterous thing, but that is where I am.

I am not sick.
I have no illness except chronic pain.
I just don't understand why I can't be normal.
That's all I want.

Oh, and this diet-for-energy I started? It pretty much went by the wayside. It is too regimented for me- I can't hold by hard-and-fast regimentation. I try and try, but wind up..... sleeping. Of course, being on vacation does not lend itself to following strict dietary laws. Well, as I write that, I realize that wherever I am in the world, I keep Kosher. It is a given, non-negotiable factor in my life. I suppose I could look at this diet that way, but it hasn't sunk in at that level for me.

Sleeping/depression- they go hand-in-hand. Throw into the pot the narcotics I take, and the nerve pain medicine, and what do I really expect, right?

I am 44 years old.
What has become of Sarah?
I am at a loss. And I am so sad about it, I don't even know where to turn. Any help (emotional) I receive seems short-lived. It helps, but then I am back to where I was before. I am still seeing the life-coaches, but I can't seem to keep up with the plans I make with one. The plans being to start playing horn a little, and start writing my book. After all, that is what I came to her with as my goals. It's just that I haven't kept up with the plans for fulfilling those goals. We focused somewhat on getting the reconstruction surgery underway (that was also a goal I explored), which may or may not happen. Even that is ambiguous, even though I spent so much time and energy on it lately.

The other one- the medical coach- well, she is more of a combination of therapist/coach. She has a therapy background from before she went into coaching, so it is natural that she uses everything in her capacity to offer help. We have done certain types of therapy, and a little goal-oriented coaching, but less of the latter.

With both coaches, I feel good when I leave a session. I feel strong and optimistic.
Then it all falls down, like a house of cards.

I am 44, I have so many things I want to do in my life.
I can't seem to fulfill them, and that feels hopeless.
Being happy would be a goal to start off with, you know?

I want to devote mornings to writing when the kids go back to school. I only pray that I can recover my mornings, lost to sleep and feeling bad. I feel that nobody could understand why I wouldn't be able to recover my mornings. Maybe I feel that because I can't understand that.


I see now that infection has also taken my mother's happiness away. She still cannot walk, and has still serious cognitive issues. She spends most of the day in bed (hospital bed in the house) either lying down, or sitting upright, with her legs dangling off the side.

Every time I talk with her, her depression is palpable.
She cannot talk to me longer than two minutes or so- that's it. Sometimes less. She is so horribly defeated, and there are times I hear anger in her voice, as well.

I am scared when I see what has happened to her.
I am scared that I won't fulfill my goals ever, because of what infection has done to my life. (isn't it crazy that daughter and mother both got sepsis?) I find it impossibly difficult to talk to her, me trying to add anything to her life in the short two minutes that she can give. Part of why it is difficult is because I compare myself to her. I am scared that if I don't "use it" now, I'll "lose it". "Use it" here means being productive, fighting depression and tiredness.
(I am, by the way, planning a trip to see my parents. It will be soon.)

It is a fight for me.
A fight that sometimes I can take on, and sometimes I am just too tired.


  1. It is very hard, difficult time for you. Maybe after sessions with coaches these goals and plans are just too much - one is good intensions, but honestly who can imagine how it is when you have severe pain 24/7 for 5 years, and under medication, thinking about new operation, being far from you parents who are also ill - i think you doing fabulously (sorry for my english - it is not my native language). Coaches are OK, but only you know what you suffer. Compation and understanding of others are nice, but even with best intensions they think you can do much more than you real potencial (body and soul) currently is. Maybe you can set smaller goals for yourself, you know - baby steps, just decide tomorrow you will do something in 15 minute duration - something that makes YOU happy, maybe it is woke up earlier and watch sun rise.. something very very small but big joy. Every day something small, when you accomplish this small thing it is not important how small it is - you will feel much better. Only you can decide and know what are your limits today and tomorrow, next week you may feel much better and will do something surprisengly huge for you.
    I pray for you and your family, health and all G-d knows in His wisdom is good for you, that He present you clearly. I wish you at least few very nice days, if not weeks and months.

  2. you are a fighter sarah, and you have won by pushing and trying to spend quality time with your children, despite you being in so much pain. may the coming new year (which is just a month away) bring you and your mom a complete refua. rochel.