~~ "She has so many aliases, you'd think she was a spy!" ~~

Monday, July 11, 2011

I dunno. You tell me.

Many of you, upon learning of Ken’s accident, made a point of reminding me to take care of myself during this crazy time. And I appreciate that, because while I intellectually know that I can’t be there for Ken if I’m not mentally and physically healthy and rested (and I always give the same advice to others), I’m not necessarily good at putting it into practice.

Also, I know I’m not good at asking for help. It’s hard for me, for whatever reason. Oh, there are some projects where I’m just peachy fine at delegation, but when it comes to everyday life, not so much. Morgana even offered to set up a Yahoogroup for me (as a friend of ours did when she had a hysterectomy)…but here’s the problem:

I don’t know what help I need.

I mean, folks have already brought some meals, and that is absolutely a huge help. I don’t enjoy cooking, and although I picked up ingredients for several meals, it’s nice to know I have a few things I can grab out of the freezer when I just can’t face cooking.

I kinda want to say it would be nice if someone could do the dishes, but really. It’s just some dishes.

Admittedly, I was feeling overwhelmed before Ken’s accident even happened, and had a bit of meltdown the day I drove down to Ontario for the IBR finish. I was planning to talk to Ken about how I needed help and he needed to take over some of the responsibilities of the house. (Hah.)

And yet…I can’t look at anything and see where I could ask a friend to pitch in. Most of this stuff is stuff I just need to do, or would take so long to explain to someone that it would be faster to do myself.

I made what I hope is a gentle To Do list for tomorrow, and there’s nothing on it I can foist off on someone else, except maybe the errands, but it would do me good to get out for a little bit. (Ken’s self-sufficient enough that I can leave for an hour or two—if I thought I needed to be out longer, I would ask someone to come and hang out with him.) The rest of my list is things like phone calls and emails and wrapping some presents so I can mail them and get them out of my house, and canceling my flight to Denver because I can’t go to the Styx show at Red Rocks (did I mention I screwed up tickets to both the Greek and LA County Fair shows, so this would have been my only front-row show by a long stretch? Yeah. Fuck.). I have managed to get receipts input into Quicken, and I’ve done laundry (still need to put it away, though). The cleaning lady is coming on Friday, which will help immensely.

So what do I ask friends to do, when they ask if they can help? They can’t write my emails, or write my novels or submit my stories (and yes, I could take time off from this, but I’m actually itching to write right now—too long without words and I get all out of sorts).

I guess all I can ask for is this: Schedule time to stop by and see Ken. He’s going stir crazy. For that matter, so am I, so feel free to call me or come over and hang out for a bit.

And if you can think of something you can help out with, let me know. Because I’m fresh out of ideas.


Shirley said...

I have trouble, too. When my friend Lindsey visits, she always vacuums for me when I take a nap (I have fibromyalgia). She knows it's hard for me, and so it doesn't get done a lot. She also does all the dishes and cooking when she's there, and "yells" at me when I start saying stuff like "Oh, you don't have to do that..." Of course she doesn't HAVE to. She wants to help me.

It's hard to ask, but if a friend can help you out just by doing a few dishes, I'm sure they would.

Now, once Ken gets better, it *will* be time for that talk, lol.

Steve said...

Time ...

You need time to do the things that matter to you. Those are the things that you know you are putting off, and it takes mental energy, just to ignore them for a while.

If your friends and family can help you create the time to do the things that you know need attention, then everything else becomes that much easier, that much more "doable".


ps ... You still don't know me ... I am not usually a stalker but was brought here after following the IBR .. so I drop by for updates and I never could keep my mouth shut :)

Phaedra said...

Heck darl'n if I lived on the same side of the states I'd be there all the time.


Meg said...

Um, what Phaedra said... :* And yeah, ask someone to just come do the dishes and the laundry. It's an hour. An hour that you can use to regroup, get a massage, or write, or not.

Love you!


eldrlawdeb said...

I have some time next week. PM or EM me with your phone # & we can work something out to give you a break.

Dayle A. Dermatis said...

Ya'll are so sweet!

The thing about the dishes is that there aren't that many at any given time. I generally attack dishes when I'm making tea, and can get most of them done in the time it takes to boil water and steep the tea.

And the cleaning lady is coming on Friday, so the bulk of the housework will be handled then. It's not hard to keep up on stuff between times. Sure, someone can come over and scoop cat litter (and when my back was out, I did ask for that), but two cat boxes = all of five minutes. Not really worth the trip!

Phae, if you lived near me, I'd keep booting you out of my house because you need to work! (How's my cover and logo coming, BTW? ;-P )

Meg, really. dishes + laundry wouldn't take up a whole hour.

Steve, Deb, really, Ken sleeps a fair amount right now, so I'm getting stuff done. In many ways it's just catching up from being away for more than a month.... ;-)

Ari said...

When my dad had his op, Mom got into frantic routine that was doing her in. I went for a few weeks just to help out, try to get her head around the fact that she didn't actually *need* to do laundry *EVERY DAY*, do it myself when her brain fritzed at the concept, etc.

Also--there are people who put away their clean laundry immediately? I thought most people I knew just put it away when someone was coming over. I mean, it's not like it's dirty, right?

Love to both of you.

Dayle A. Dermatis said...

Laundry every day? More like, laundry when I run out of acceptable panties.

And I do try to put laundry away immediately after drying, to reduce wrinkles and also because I'll need that laundry basket by the time I strip to go to bed.

Teresa Noelle Roberts said...

Darling, if I were there, I'd be dropping off food and folding your laundry. But I'm not.

So would a phone call (after the weekend--I'm away and the cell reception at Mom's is awful) be a welcome diversion at this point or one more damn thing to deal with?

Dayle A. Dermatis said...

Ya'll seem to think laundry takes way more time/effort than I do.... ;-)

Teresa: Um, maybe? Depends on when. Probably best to pre-schedule via email.