Fossilized Umbilical Cord

My wonderful sibling has booked a vacation for the family for May. One of my co-workers suggested I take my vacation but stay at home with my husband while my sibling takes the parental unit away for a week.

I causally mention this to the parental unit, just tossing that out there like a thought grenade that could go off in her head at any time, perhaps planting the seed that MAYBE I would like to spend some alone time with the spouse. Not that we really need it since being on opposite schedules we don't really even SEE each other, but hey, I will take what I can get.

The result was not QUITE what I was looking for. I got, "Well if you don't go, I am not going."

I know, at this point, I don't even need to say it, BLANK FACE.

Should I have perhaps said, we want some SEXY TIME? Do I need to parade my cottage cheese covered ass cheeks around the house in all their nekkid glory for her to get the idea that I might want to have alone time with my spouse? Apparently. Somewhere in this 43 year journey I somehow failed to notice that I AM STILL CONNECTED TO HER VIA A FOSSILIZED UMBILICAL CORD. It no longer nourishes me, but in the exact opposite it sucks all life giving joy and happiness out of every moment of existence.

This was pounded into my psyche when I had a conversation with said sibling that SEVERAL conversations were had over the previous week and weekend for the parental unit to stay with her for a few days, thus giving me a much needed respite. This was greeted with apparent excuses, etc which results in us staying attached at the hip. We are so attached that the said Parade of Spaz continued at each and every location we went to since pulling a luggage carrier is too hard for her. I might interject here that we have a Pulse Oxygen meter for checking her. When she is on her concentrator her Pulse Ox is as good as mine. (I have not ever nor shall I ever smoke)....... By the time the weekend was done, I was in full meltdown mode. I made myself physically ill, rather than allow the angst to escape and cause her harm. Before anyone can ask, she is in FULL CONTROL of all of her mental faculties. I could excuse her if she was not. I might not like it, but when someone older starts down that painful road, it is all anyone can do to cope with it, and should be handled kindly. She has no excuse other than being ornery, and yet I am still kind. (I was a rotten kid so I am trying to make up in some way for my behavior I think).

Bless my sister, she has arraigned to steal the parental unit for the weekend so I have only myself and my spouse to worry about for four days. I can perhaps ween off of the steady diet of Xanax and Excedrin for a few days and maybe prevent the coming heart explosion or murder. Whichever comes first I guess.


  1. First thoughts: Kill or be killed. Drug or be drugged.

    Things can feel so close to the bone, so touch-and-go just to survive moment by moment.

    I love the bit at the end about how your sis has arranged to STEAL your mom for the weekend.

    To be honest, it should be a regular thing, that everyone involved plans on and looks forward to. Something special for your sis, her girls, your mom, and you. A change of pace. Something out of the ordinary. A regular thing, so there's none of this bristling and resistance on her end. Something inevitable, inescapable, and something "conditional" for her continued co-habitation.

    1. it would be nice if it were so simple. as time goes on she becomes more entrenched and unhappy and it just devolves into BIG BALL O' SUCK daily.

  2. All the more reason to somehow or another get HER on the happy pills. I'm very much of the "better living thru chemistry" mindset. I just got to a point in my own life where I resented being on mood stabilizers because all the gadflies in my family were not medicated themselves.

    The lock on the door is key here. It's a barrier. It's healthy. Limits are healthy. She can either abide or no, but that door should be locked when you need it to be locked.

  3. Ok, I knew you as a kid and you weren't bad. You need to tell her, forcefully, if that is how she will hear it. If you don't the situation will get worse, your resentment will get worse, and your mental health will get worse. None of those things will do anyone any good.


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