Holidays and other crazy-makers

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by Chasejazz, Sep 2, 2019.

  1. Chasejazz

    Chasejazz Member

    Again I saw that advice column, Ask Amy in my Google feed. Why I read it is beyond me. But.... Her take was on nursing homes and people who have no visitors, because, she says, in this life you reap what you sow.
    Why did I read it you wonder? Because I thought this horrible woman might have a good post for once. But no. She is the Queen of "toxic family syndrome". Her advice to nearly every troubled relationship is to run while you can!
    Whatever happened to not giving up til there was nothing left to give? To know that at least you tried?
    To forgive. To what wounds time might heal?
    I swear, I might end up in a nursing home w no one to visit me. Certainly not my kids, anyway. And being divorced, there's no spouse.
    I am trying, on a daily basis to rebuild myself like a Phoenix bird, arising from its own ashes.
    I used to ruminate on where things went so wrong, and if indeed I was the problem. But therapy, brutal honesty and some very deep soul searching have tought me that I really was a good (enough) mother. I really did like/love my kids. I don't know, and will probably never know how things got so screwy. I'm rambling here, I know.
    My block is littered with cars. People visiting family and friends for barbecues and holiday get-togethers. But not me. Again, I'm in this house alone. I never made many close friends and my family's across country. Too busy raising a family and taking care of other people. Heck. Maybe that Ask Amy is right. You do reap what you sow.
    Anyway, Happy Labour Day.
     
  2. Nandina

    Nandina Member

    Chase, please do not think that about yourself. There are plenty of good folks in nursing homes whose kids are just too busy, too preoccupied with their children’s lives, work or just plain selfish, who don’t visit. Ask anyone who has worked in one. I volunteered in hospice and it was the same. Or maybe there is a family with three children but only one makes any effort to visit the parent. This happens a lot.

    I use volunteer work as a way to try and make a difference in someone’s life and also get out and meet people and be active.
    Like you, my family is spread out over the states. It was hard to have much of a social life when my difficult child was in the home as we could never trust him to stay alone so we could go out. As for volunteering, I’ve lately been interested in the foster grandparent program here where you don’t actually foster, but just spend time with a kid. I’d like to do Big Brothers, Big Sisters, but think I’m too old! There are literacy programs where you can teach immigrants to speak and write English, Meals on Wheels (many of those folks have no one except the person who delivers their food), Fish Pantry and other groups through churches that help the underserved. Or perhaps take a foreign language class, learn to dance or play an instrument. My choice is usually one where I can meet people with similar interests. I am currently writing a grant for a small, all volunteer horse rescue in my area.

    I know it’s sometimes hard to get up and out, particularly when there is any level of sadness or depression, but it’s worth a try— there really is a whole world out there that I know I missed, raising my last and difficult child! In our area we have a Meetup app online where there is every group imaginable for someone to join (and I do mean *every* Lol) My feeling is if I don’t feel I am getting the love I deserve from one of my children, I will find other children or people who need me. I hope if you are in good health and have a little time to give that you might consider one of these ideas. It will truly make a difference in someone’s life as well as your own. And Bless you.
     
    • Winner Winner x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  3. Chasejazz

    Chasejazz Member

    Thank you for writing back, Nandina.
    It makes a big difference. More then you might imagine.
    I did join a ceramics class, which meets on Thursdays. Only 3 classes so far, but I like it.
    Right now, my car's not working so it's tough. No public transportation here and most places are too far for me to walk.
    Two of my kids are mechanics. I paid for their training and licences lol! and now I don't have enough to fix my own car. Life is funny.
    Nonetheless, things sometimes improve without realizing it. As a matter of fact, I had been actively looking at volunteering.
    I will keep you posted.
    Have a good day : )
     
  4. WiseChoices

    WiseChoices Active Member

    Mhm, so, for me I know it's a red flag when I start to indulge in self pity. And the way to get out of that is to be of service. That is the spiritual antidote to self pity .

    Why not visit a nursing home and sit with someone who is alone this holiday? Uplifting them by lending a listening ear, being positive, sharing hope and love, reflecting their innocence back to them? Asking what I can give .

    Do you have a Higher Power? I pray for my children and I turn my relationship with them over to my higher power. And I ask God to show me how God sees them. And I pray for God to bless them with everything I want for myself.

    Do you belong to Al-Anon? A church or life enrichment center? These are great places to meet people and break out of isolation.
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
    • List
  5. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    I agree to get out if isolation. Many people without family build their own support systems. Al Anon is good but my real outside of family support system comes from our church. We are a close, smaller congregation and we do a lot of volunteer work too. We are very welcoming to newcomers.

    I am older but I go to the gym and have met some great people there too. Meet ups are fun as well.

    I never had to make my own family. I am fortunate. But I added to my family through church, gym and Al Anon. We always invite people without families to come to our home for the holidays. We have been greatly enriched by their presences.

    There are ways to find loving friends. Please do so. You deserve loving people in your life.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
    • List
  6. Chasejazz

    Chasejazz Member

    We don't have much of those things here, but when I get this car working I'd like to volunteer in the city doing something.
    2700 miles away, my mother is dying, she is in a coma...
    My Dad is alone to care for her.
    Who knows.
    Maybe, I'm just sad.
    I don't know.
    It might be self pity, too.
    Good call.
    No sense feeling bad about things you can't change.
    Thanks!
     
  7. Chasejazz

    Chasejazz Member

    I looked up the definition of self pity because I wasn't sure what it meant.
    Actually, I think self searching and self-compassion are more accurate for where I am right now.
     
  8. Crayola13

    Crayola13 Active Member

    That isn't the reason people in nursing homes don't get company.

    When my grandma had to go in a nursing home, my dad had to get power of attorney, which meant my dad controlled my grandma's money. My uncle felt no need to see her anymore because he couldn't get anymore money out of her.

    Other people in nursing homes don't get visitors because their family lives out of state.
     
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
    • List
  9. ChickPea

    ChickPea Active Member

    Sorry, hon. People can be in a room full of others and still feel alone. Holidays are often crazy makers. Sometimes just scrolling through Facebook is a crazy maker. I don't know if you're an introvert and it is difficult to find new friends/people, but I'm a bit like that. To everyone I'm sure I seem like an extrovert, but I just have a hard time with small talk (seems like a waste of time), so I don't like to try new things as a way to meet people. It happened organically with children and work, but otherwise not as much.

    Anyway, waving hello and sending a hug.
     
    • Winner Winner x 2
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • List
  10. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    There are many reasons that someone in a nursing home may not have any visitors and for this so called "advice columnist", she has a lot to learn about life. Personally, I think what she said was not only wrong but very cold and cruel.

    When I lived in another state, I was busy raising my son, dealing with all his chaos and working. I had some family in the city I lived but we did not always get together. I had very few friends.
    When my husband and I moved to the state we live in now, I vowed that my life would be different. We have always been church goers but I never really got involved in any of the groups or activities. Once we found our new church I started seeking out groups to join. I also made a choice to get to know my new neighbors. The first year we lived here, I hosted a Christmas party for my new neighbors. It was a great way to meet and start to get to know them. For the past 12 plus years my husband and I get together with 3 other neighbor/couples and play cards. We rotate houses each month. It's a blast.

    I'm 10 years younger than my husband and the youngest of 4. I have just one son who if you read my signature will get where I am with him. I hope to live a long healthy and happy life but someday I may end up in a nursing home and I may not have anyone who will come to visit me. If that's the case, so be it. It will not be because "I've reaped what I've sown". The older I get the more I think about my final years on this earth and one thing I know for sure, I don't want to waste any time with regret. I do my best to live a full life and I choose to be happy.

    You are done raising your family so now is the time for YOU. Venture out and find things you like to do. Once you get involved in some activities I'm sure you will form some friendships. Also, it's okay to be alone as long as you understand the difference of being alone or being lonely.

    Sending you warm ((HUGS))
     
    • Winner Winner x 7
    • Like Like x 1
    • List
  11. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    Tanya, great great great post.

    That is really how to live life at any age.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
    • List
  12. Nandina

    Nandina Member

    I agree, very uplifting post and what a wonderful way to live life. Thank you.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Winner Winner x 1
    • List
  13. Chasejazz

    Chasejazz Member

    Great posts!
    So, I'll have you know I've completely stopped reading 'Ask Amy' because her advice column is trash.
    Anyway, I told some of you that I had joined a ceramics class a couple of months back (after all this started w my son moving out).
    That, and also that my Mom has become gravely ill, which has been pretty tough.

    Well, the other day I finally finished my first piece of art in ceramics class.
    I was so proud of myself you'd have thought I re-painted the Sistine Chapel!
    A) because I joined something, and stuck with it all summer.
    And B) because I'm doing something for the first time in I-don't-know-how- long that's just for myself !
    That's huge for me!
    On the other note, I do talk to my Dad on the phone regularly. They live cross country, and things don't look good for my Mom. My heart's broken because I'm bracing for the fact that I might lose her soon.
    She really, really wanted to see me and my kids heal and reconcile, etc. I know the whole situation hurt her badly, but I don't think she and Dad fully understand what happened in regard to my kids and why we're estranged.
    They never had those kind of issues with me or my sisters.
    Anyways, my Dad was happy that I've gotten involved in something and that I'm getting out more and making some friends... (I try to stay w upbeat stuff when I talk to him bc he'sup in age and has so much going on, as you can imagine)..
    Also, I finally got my old car back up and running, (thanks to my Ex). Yeah!
    This isn't a big share, but it's forward progress by any means, and that works for me.
    I miss my kids. I love really them. I have not heard anything from my son, I have to assume he is okay, safe... but it's really time to move on, little by little.
    Small steps. ♡
    ((Hugz2all)).

    It's not that I need easy right now, I just can't have 'so hard'...
    - Liz Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • List
  14. BusynMember

    BusynMember Active Member

    It is hard when we can't give beloved parents what they want before they leave. But I believe strongly that our loved ones can see us and be with us from Heaven. I have even had crazy weird experiences of seeing and hearing from deceased love ones, even pets, so I totally think our consciouscness never really dies if we are good folks. I breach my Christian roots by reading about near death experiences, which I have had, astral travel and those who remember past lives....I talk to my ancestors who crossed over and hear back. When I was young I saw angels and thought nothing of it. I feel angels now. No, I am not nor ever have been mentally ill.

    Maybe your mother will be able to understand more in Heaven and even guide you. We don't know everything.

    Blessings.;
     
  15. WiseChoices

    WiseChoices Active Member

    I am so sorry your Mom is very ill.

    You are doing well taking care of yourself! The ceramics class sounds like a wonderful , fun time!
     
  16. Nandina

    Nandina Member

    Chase, I hope you take that beautiful piece of ceramics you created and put it in a prominent place in your home where you can look at it everyday with pride! Good for you. Nothing like a little creativity to get us out of our “heads” and into “the zone,” as I like to call it.

    And I am so very sorry to hear about your mother. I hope there is some way that you’ll be able to spend some time with her.

    Hugs to you,
    Nan