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Caregiver Needing Help

xKatehx
Posts: 4
Joined: Nov 2008

I am a college student living at home with my mom who has IIIA NSCLC. She's in such bad shape, not because of any tumors but because of her weak immune system and her weak bones. She has recently contracted Pseudomonas AGAIN, and has fractured a rib and probably a vertebrae just from coughing. I go to school full time, I work about 16hrs a week for it's all I can do, and the rest of my time is doing homework and caring for her every need. I've had to do some dirty jobs, and I finally drew my line at her, and I felt so horrible. You ever hear from nurses where there's always one of the gross-out categories that they can't take? Well, I found mine- it's throw-up. Her pain pill got her stomach in such a knot she threw up in a bucket i gave her, but she didn't get rid of the stuff. So I couldn't even see it and just the thought was making me want to puke, so I asked her so nicely to clean the bucket, and she did, while in so much pain. I feel so bad I told her to do it, but I couldn't even hold my breath to even look at the bucket EMPTY let alone clean the bucket. It's just me and her, and my sister lives about 25 minutes away, so I'm really the only one who takes care of her. My sister comes over and does the little stuff, but she hasn't been the one sitting up late at night rubbing her mom's back, getting her pills, filling her water, cooking, cleaning, hearing the throw-up sounds, all that. I've asked for help before but all I get is a few hours to help clean. It's not that I'm ungrateful, but I would rather her be around for the less menial tasks. She wasn't around for the throw-up, she doesn't have to lose sleep to rub her mom's back. I can't bring myself to confront her about it without sounding utterly resentful and mean, and I have blown up in front of my mom about it and it turned into something pretty ugly. We're too tight with money so hiring a nurse is simply out of the question, and I just have no idea what else to do. I want to help her but I feel like I'm the only one doing ANYTHING. And it irks me so, so, SO much that nobody around me has to do the same things I've done.

nsquirrely
Posts: 50
Joined: May 2007

I just wanted to tell you that God sent your Mother an angel when you were born. In today's world it's hard to find a young person that has the kind of love and devotion that you are giving your Mother.
I can see that life is hard for you and that you do need a break and some help. I don't know your sister's situation but it does seem unfair that so much is put off on you. You should share your feelings with her when you have control of how you feel about it. That is so hopefully there will be no yelling. We all tend to take things out on the people we are closest to so unfortunately it is only natural that you would on a bad day say things to your Mother that you might regret later. Believe me as a mother who has gone through cancer, she has a lot of regrets as well. I'm sure that she appreciates every thing you sacrifice each day for her needs and regrets that she can't change it for you.
Perhaps there are other resources out there to help you. Your Mother's friends, a good neighbor, your local church or other family members. Maybe your sister could look into some options for you to help give you more time for your own needs. Your local Cancer Society may be able to provide with some resources to help you.
I hope that things get easier for you and that you will have some time for your self soon.
Hugs and Prayers to you and your Mother. God bless you for all you do each day.

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