~This is the eighth chapter of my year-long exploration of
living with Type 1 diabetes for 50 years.~
My parents were triumphant in the success of the last weeks of August after their move. They busily prepared for a trip to California for my dad’s professional work. My brother was going along for support. Bags were packed, their travel went off without a hitch. Over the next few days, my sister and I got text messages about how great their trip was going. Until it wasn’t.
Dad fell in the marble-floored lobby of the hotel as they were checking out. Urgent care, then hospital, missed flights. Broken bones on both sides of his body and the logistics unfolding. In the early morning hours when, with shuttles from my brother in law, the parents finally arrived home from their ordeal and went to bed.
It was only then that it really began: dealing with all the family dynamics about the care to my parents, trying to maintain my billable hour income and the shuttle of moving from my apartment to the hospital/rehab to dinner with my mom and back to my own place. For three weeks.
In this effort, one part of my current life purpose in this relocation to Maine was fulfilled. There was work to do, a role to play, and the gratitude flowed. It was a reckoning of my own sense of “payback” that brought me here. I’d lived away for so long, and there have been untold sets of worries and concerns that I engendered over the years. Compounded on all of this, I’ve always felt that being diabetic was an extra burden for my family.
There were extra expenses, things my parents did to help me feel better about myself. There were small secrets that the family maintained, like the sugared cereal that I’d found in the cabinet after coming home from camp, that created a space where I felt normal. All of their worry over the years, compounded by a long stage of vagabonding, fizzled relationships, and their perception of my sense of aloneness.
I have always had a lingering sense of feeling apart, disconnected and not like the other. Despite the outer pretenses that I’ve got it together: a great professional approach, connected community, and maintain a busy life with hobbies, I’m still feeling that I’m attending to an obligation with staying in Maine. I dream of what I would do with a life unencumbered, where I could make my way in a different landscape and with a low budget.
There are tools that I can use~ meditation, a more active reading and less social media, keeping up with exercising and exploring, staying on the path to find the tribe~ but for these coming months, I am feeling myself settling into an uneasy pattern. Waiting.