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Barmy Blue's Bland Blog

This Changes Everything And Nothing

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Sorry to post two days in a row but I can't sit on this. I think I've mostly settled it all in my mind but I still feel off. Kind of betrayed but not really. I feel like I've been lied to but I haven't. I just wasn't told. And in the end it doesn't actually change anything.

My dad called to update us. It looks like some cancer has moved to his bladder and spine but it's alright. Well It's not. No it's fine because it could be worse because it's not effecting the nerves and stuff. That's like saying it's not a murder case it's just manslaughter because the defendant didn't mean it.
Anyway. He's booked in to have his first radiotherapy some time next week/ The side effects can hit everyone differently. Now he understands how his brother felt, especially when he got fed up with it all. He doesn't want to drag it all out. He wants to live as well as he can while he can but when it starts getting bad he'll likely stop treatment and live as well as he can for a few months. Fair enough. I don't object to that. It meant that metaphorical clock is ticking down faster but I respect and understand that choice.
He's on oxycodone for pain management. They've said not to be a hero and bear with the pain as long as possible, ask before it gets that bad. So he is. Mostly just so he can sleep. I've seen a lot of CSI. That stuff is addictive. I know I know but it's what the doctors are giving me, it's medical etc. I know that. I just wanted to warn you it's addictive. I know that. Okay, just so you know you could go through withdrawal when you come off it (I forgot to consider if) since you don't even know what to call it (I didn't add that bit but the best he manages is oxy...done or something. Dad just call it oxy. They'll know, since it's for pain relief, why struggle with the name? Or at least say okay to me since I know because you've been on the phone for a while, half talking to me and half talking to the staff). He knows that too, they warned him. I wonder if he has any idea how bad withdrawal can be. I don't know either but I know it's bad.
In regards to his infection and all his pee bag looks golden like delicious golden syrup (I think he might have also said thick, Thick and golden so if so then that's preferable to barely a thing with clots it seems)/ He's due an MRI and thinks he could be out some time tomorrow, otherwise he'll have to get it as an outpatient.
There was a mix up regarding that. They took him for an MRI yesterday and only when they were about to go in and they were doing final checks, confirming information and such just to be sure, they confirmed his name. That's not his surname. Hold on we have this. Well that's not him. They'd mixed him up with another man in the same ward with the same first name and a very similar sounding second name (so we can understand the mistake) different middle name. He points out that well he was due a CT today (which is the same department. Slightly different area but the same overall department). So they go okay, as you're here we'll do your CT now so it's not a wasted journey. And he got back in time for dinner which is nice. You see this is exactly why they check then re-check everything before going in.

The old issue came up. I need to get a job and he did go on and on which is fair. He's not having a go. He just wants/needs the reassurance that we'll be okay because he can't keep covering the bills and we can't expect "Sharon" to do it when he can't (in no way shape or form would either of us ever expect that. Not even if we were acquainted with her). She's been okay about him still covering bills so far and all (that's just what was decided when my parents unofficially separated, unofficial as in there was no legal stuff, that he'd still pay the bills rather than do an official child support thing. Fair enough) He's on the way out and my Mum won't be around forever (I know that. More acutely than you think since as it stands at the moment when they're both gone I have little to nothing except a bunch of stuff all over the place. Family too far away who I see about as often as my dad. There is a way to not have to deal with everything when that happens and just leave it all to someone else but let's not get into that. It might not happen anyway. There will still be a lot of things I'll want to see or do so let's not think about all that. Don't worry. I just figured it was better to be honest with my thoughts)
Back to my dad and jobs. You don't be needing to earn a million pounds or what ever. Rough figure a year or even minimum wage. (do you really think it's the amount that stops me? It's that I don't like people and I'm lazy. Oh so lazy. And I had changes to my routine especially big changes but that's all besides the point). And here's the thing. Here's my second mixed feeling moment today. The first was the idea of him stopping when he's had enough so the potential number of years dropped but I'm okay with that because it makes sense. If well I should say when. When I get a job he'll be proud of me....He can speak for my mum on this too because he knows she feels the same way...but still. Context unsaid is of course we're already proud of you and we just want you to e alright when we're gone and all and that's all perfectly reasonable. I already knew that there's not much to be proud of me at the moment. It's one of those things where you have to look for little and possibly insignificant things to feel better like you're a good person and you did this and that and we're proud of you kind of thing, but we could be more proud of you. I understand. I agree. But it still stung. That wasn't his intention. and I know he's right completely. But it still stung.

But that's not the thing. He had more and it changes everything and nothing at the same time. It's just the way I see the story I guess.
You remember how yesterday I basically word vomited about a stranger dealing with my dad's things, a stranger to me, and how I felt about it, kind of okay but not okay but okay but not okay? (If you haven't read that then this will make less sense. I won't recommend you go read it now though, as you got this far and that's really long).

"Sharon" ISN'T a stranger.

Before I divulge because I'm liable to get lost better put some of my reaction here. I feel betrayed but not really. Lied to but not really because it wasn't a lie I just wasn't told. It looks like my mum knew which feels more like a betrayal but not really but kind of. It's like I saw a jigsaw puzzle going one way with this section all done and then it fits into the bigger picture but differently than before. If she knew why didn't my mum tell me? Maybe she didn't know for sure. Maybe she'd suspected. I get why they were reluctant to tell me. In a different mind set I'd react very differently. Now ultimately I realize that I don't actually care THAT much and the facts I already knew are unchanged. It does make me wonder what else my dad hasn't exactly lied about but just hasn't told me (like some years ago now where he casually dropped the fact that he has sisters.... Excuse me. SISTERS! I have aunties somewhere. They were from his dad's side, it was a pretty mixed up time for people in the late 40's to 50's so it's not surprising. A lot of things changed for a lot of people in a lot of different ways and things weren't really talked about much. Nothing bad happened between them or anything, they just never bothered with each other. It's not a big scandalous story or anything. My main thought was what if I'd met someone and found out too late that they're actually my cousin I never knew about. But with me being the way I am that wouldn't happen. I'm unlikely to ever date anyone so it's not an issue. But sill, the potential existed). Just as long as you're not keeping other children from me. Step/surrogate children I can accept, even if you spent more time with them I can accept their existence. But if you actually produced another human I don't know how I'll feel. If maybe it died young I can understand why you wouldn't want to talk about it but living. I don't know.

So. Now I've said all that in more words than necessary lest me take you back a long long way to my early childhood, the very beginning in fact. A precious time I treasure as the time I was truly happy because everything was simple and seriously something needs to be VERY wrong for a child not to be generally happy.

I come into the world with things established. My parents have close old friends. They already have a son together. He's maybe 2 when I'm born. A year or so later his sister is born. So naturally we're friends. Up to a point I've grown up with them. They always moved. The dad was with the RAF so that's why. But we all kept in contact. Then what with distance and life we didn't see each other as much as before. Things changed in their household. The parents got divorced. Mine were still together (but not really, I hadn't grasped the separation. They're still married they just don't live together. By choice. That's a divorce in all but name but I haven't worked that out yet. As far as I know divorce is a bad/unhappy thing and we don't have it. Ha. Stupid nave little beast)

We're growing up and eventually that's it. Contact lost.

I've thought about them all sometimes. The good bad and just average memories. They're all still happy memories even though I cringe at my own stupidity. But it's okay, even though some things feel embarrassing it's okay I was a child so it's okay to make mistakes. That's why memories I don't hate I just don't like so much are still good and happy.

Over the past decade or so, what with the rise of social media I've wondered about finding her. My mum's old friend. I never did mostly because we don't have much we want to show. When you catch up with someone you want to at least be doing as well as them so they won't pity you. A house we don't want people in and a daughter with a university degree who does nothing all day is not something you want to talk about/show. That and I don't like giving information out online and there'd have to be at least some degree of that to actually contact her. Anyway. I never did it or even planned doing it. It was just a vague some time in the future daydream kind of thing.

I've thought about her a little more especially since "Sharon" came up. They have the same name. Here's where I regret picking "Sharon" as a name. If I'd known I'd have picked a more fitting name but I'll just have to reap what I've sown. Although Sharon is the full name I always knew this friend by a shortened version. For the sake of the story I guess it'll have to be "Shaz" *shiver*. No offence to anyone actually named Shaz or similarly. It's just the idea or Sharon shortened to Shaz that I don't like. It feels cheap.

So. Anyway. I always knew her as "Shaz". That's what everyone called her. It's weird to call her "Sharon" the only time something like that would come up was something official. I can't be bothered to name her children. They're both perfectly nice and normal names. It's just the two together were referred to as/by me as "Son" and "Daughter". On it's own "Son" or "Daughter" could be anyone with the same name. But saying "Son" and "Daughter" I know exactly who you mean. I have fond memories of them. They were my friends.


Back to the present. By now you've figured it out. I'm not hiding it.
My dad's saying not to expect him for Christmas. That's not a slight (he knows I'm oversensitive but not as much as he thinks. Or at least not in the areas he thinks. I'm a bit disappointed but I understand why. I get it. So at no point did I think you were slighting me/us) and maybe we can meet up somewhere for Christmas. Not on Christmas day of course but you get the idea. Something and such. This is how it is, I come and see you for Christmas Day, "Sharon" sees "Son" and "Daughter" for Christmas day.... He talks a bit about Christmas. Mentions the time mum threw sprouts at him (he deserved it but he wasn't being mean. He'd just neglected to tell us beforehand that he wouldn't be staying for dinner but not why. Turns out he had something he had to do in daylight. Assess a job I think. You could've just said that. Or better still told us at least a day in advance. If it were just the two of us she'd make less fuss (she cooks the dinner. I help a bit now but it's always been her because I was too little to help originally) and at the time he's the only one who ate sprouts. They were on a stalk not a bag so now we give him the sprout stalk to take home. This is because I mentioned it when I saw the stalks Christmas shopping. We'd had a conversation about sprouts after he'd got me from Uni for the holiday and he said since he likes them he gets a stalk of them, even when it's not Christmas. So that's why the stalk thing. I eat them now too. I didn't like them when I was little but they're okay now. Tiny potent cabbages)

I ruined the pacing there. Hang on.

"Sharon" sees "Son" and "Daughter"....*record scratch* *dramatic reveal music*

So. "Sharon" is "Shaz" from my childhood. I can't speak. Mainly because I don't want to make a big deal out of this. If you weren't trying to hide this fact then why the **** are you calling her by her full name. I remember "Shaz" not "Sharon" and if you were trying to hide this then not smart because I'd find out eventually and be even more hurt. Maybe hurt isn't the right thing. I'll get into that later.

We have a whiteboard by the phone so I write mum a note (she's sat next to the phone). ""Shaz"" (also regretting the quotation marks now but I'm sticking with it). To clarify "That Shaz" then to clarify more so she gets what I'm trying to say "That "Shaz" + "insert husband's name" (because that was quicker than writing out her children's names. in general the parents were referred to together to clarify when I was younger). She doesn't look as surprised as I must. She asks if I'm alright. Yeah. I don't want her to see my face now. What would you do if I said no? A cuddle might make me cry down the phone and my dad doesn't need to think he's upset me. I just need a moment to settle my head. I don't want to talk about it. Either I'm immensely stupid or they were shielding me. I'm not sure which is more comforting. Thankfully he hasn't noticed and things get back to normal. He does go on a lot but be grateful for this time because one day you won't hear his voice. At one point he says hang on and takes me off speaker.... You had me on SPEAKER in a hospital? Sigh. It's because the line was quiet. It's okay. Eventually conversation wraps up with the details I've told you and some other randomness and I can finally escape to process more fully.

I like darkness. I go upstairs in the dark (I count every step. Have since I was young. It's 15. Good to know when you can't see). Sit on the toilet to pee in the dark because why not. And the processing it done there really (I wasn't just peeing) so when I got to curl up in my room my feelings were mostly sorted.

Like I said. This changes everything and nothing. What I thought I knew isn't what I thought but ultimately it makes no difference to the grand scheme of things and life isn't simple. The people from my childhood don't stay in that point, they move and change as everything does so I never thought they'd all be exactly the same as I remembered them. Mostly it just puts a new tint on my happy carefree childhood memories that I held sacred like a perfect fresh footprint in freshly fallen snow. It's still the same but different. And at least I don't need to worry about dealing with a stranger. I haven't seen her in such a long time but she's someone I have a history with. We at least have shared memories in common. I could also wonder how and when these two became what ever they are but I really REALLY don't want to do that so I won't.

So that's it.
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