Wednesday, July 11, 2012
I think I'm done.
This life as a caregiver is nothing but repetition, day in, day out. It is the same story every day with only minor variations of a theme. Even the days of drama have a sameness to them. It is a waiting game, a race to the finish. Who will get there first? I wonder if I could even exist outside this shackled life, if my feet will fumble the moment I am off my Sisyphean path.
I have tried to stop the daydreams of other things. Of travel. Of love. Of variety. The sameness stretches out before me like a long, well-traveled road I know too intimately. Every curve, hill and bump has been covered countless times with only the timing of the inevitable end shrouded and uncertain in the distance. When I dream of a fork in the road, my way is always blocked. I cannot tear my way through because one of us cannot travel that route and I must not leave my companion behind. The daydreams must stop.
So I am destined to travel back and forth on this rutted path, covering the same ground repeatedly, wheels spinning, the ruts deepening. The few words spoken each day must not vary, the messages must be as simple as possible: "Arms up," as I pull off a sodden nightshirt each morning; "Put the pills in your hand. Now take a drink. Swallow," at the end of the day when even that action can prove too difficult to complete without instruction. I try other words, pretend to converse, but I am almost always alone, always stuck in a monologue.
We live in a circular present. We cannot make plans because there is no future for us together beyond the limbo we live in here and now, to be repeated how many more times. We are both drifting into the past in our heads, he in his choice of movies - old westerns and war movies from his youth - and I into the hazy memories of our past life together before this disease took it all away, those memories the only things that sustain me through the sameness. I travel those old roads daily to remind myself of the warm, devastatingly handsome man I once knew.
It is my dream life that knows no boundaries. It is where I travel. I love. I rage and roar. I laugh. I cry. I dance and scream. But it is of no consequence. It is but a fantasy world that cannot be reached on this road I travel. It is to remain an unwritten story.
So I bid adieu for now. I may be back, but unless the road widens and the landscape changes, I see no point in the travelogue anymore. It is but endless repetition.
It is time for me to write of other things.