This week has been horrible. And really quite scary.
My dad is depressed. I went up to visit my parents on Monday, and was shocked by what I found. He has lost massive amounts of weight, and his clothes are hanging off him. He has a black eye. How he got that I have no idea, and he certainly isn’t telling. He cries, all the time. He is agitated, and has the same circle of self-punishing thoughts and worries going round in his head, all the time. He told me what they were, and isn’t able to hear/listen to any of us refuting those thoughts, which are ridiculous. I heard the same thing at least ten times in the first hour I was there. It was exhausting, and frustrating for me. I can’t imagine what it was like for him.
He cries out in anguish, and he hits himself. He shuffles around like an old man. He’s not entirely lucid all the time. He scares me. He doesn’t sleep after 3am, and spends the early hours pacing, and worrying. He and my mum are sleeping in separate rooms.
On tuesday, I took him to the GP. He asked me to tell her what was going on, so I did. I felt disloyal to him, telling her just how bad he is. She asked him if he had had thoughts of harming himself. I have not experienced anything quite so scary as hearing my dad describe the suicidal thoughts he has had. He is now on antidepressants, and having counselling. The drugs haven’t kicked in yet. I hope they do soon. Until then, my mum is doling out the medication and hiding the knives.
I couldn’t be there for long, I found it so scary, and emotionally draining. The atmosphere was awful. I feel guilty for that, I feel guilty that I couldn’t stay for longer. I feel guilty that I couldn’t do more. My mum and my dad cried when I left. My mum isn’t coping either, unsurprisingly. She finds it tough being on her own with him. She has had enough of his irrational thoughts, having heard them millions of times, with no respite caused from the acceptance of her counter-arguments. She misses her husband, and has to bear the brunt of his anger and frustration. Every morning, she is frightened of what she might find.
So we are phoning them on a daily basis, and my sister is going to see them at the weekend. It feels inadequate.
On top of this, my period has started, and it’s the same, and I can’t see how I can get pregnant with an endometrium this thin. I know the gynaecologist isn’t too concerned about this, or tells me not to be too concerned, but I can’t help it. I know very well that it’s far from ideal in there. I know I feel the same way, every month when I see how light my period is, and that it’ll pass, and the old Positive Thinking Fairy will take over again once it’s over, but for now, I am worried.
And I feel awful for worrying about my reproductive system when my father is so unwell. It feels so selfish, and so insignificant.
Hold my hand?