I miss how it used to be.

My dad had a tough week last week and last night was a hard night.  He’s just got so much indigestion and the pills he takes for it make him so tired.  He slept most of the day yesterday.  Things have been hard in the house.  My dad has changed a lot the last week or so and I’m sure it’s because he feels like crap but it’s really making me long for it to be like it was a few months ago.

He’s so crabby.  I don’t blame him… the man has terminal cancer.  But even in the beginning he was still “same old dad” and now he’s not.  He’s irritable about the weirdest things now.  Like my shoes being on the floor even though I’m going out and I need to wear them again.  Or the trash can being half full.  Things that never bothered him are suddenly causing the end of the world.

He’s also so closed off which is both sad and annoying.  Sad because I was hoping we could be his sounding board through this and annoying because there are some things we just need to know.  I know he doesn’t want us to baby him and I’m sure there are times where my mom and I come off like we are but really we’re just trying to figure out what we need to do to make things easier for all of us.  But no, we get no information and if we ask we get our head chewed off.  This hasn’t entirely been a change from the way it used to be but the cancer sure put his secrecy over the edge.

He sleeps so much now.  Which, again I totally expected him to but he refuses to take his sleeping pills at all so now his sleep schedule is all screwed up.  He’s napping 2 times a day and sometimes he sleeps the whole day through. Then at night he’s up and he hates it. I keep trying to tell him that if he takes the sleeping pills at night he’ll sleep through the night.  Then when he wakes up he won’t be so tired throughout the day.  But playing off what I just said any time I get the conversation going it shuts down pretty quickly because “he’s fine” and “I don’t need to hover over him.”

People don’t joke when they tell you that everything is going to be different after you or someone you know is diagnosed with cancer.  Like of course I knew that things we’re going to change but I was really hoping that we all wouldn’t change as a family.  The dynamic is off and that’s the hardest part.  I’m trying to spend as much time with my dad but sometimes he doesn’t even feel like my dad anymore.  Yes, I know I’m horrible for saying it.  Yes, I feel bad about it.

I’m just trying to keep my shit together here. I’m desperately hoping that this is just a bad week and maybe he’ll feel a little less irritable soon.  Just crossing my fingers that our trip this week goes well.  I think we all need a breather.

Allison

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I miss how it used to be.

11 thoughts on “I miss how it used to be.

  1. I know what you mean by when you say it doesn’t feel like your dad anymore . You have the sense of loss , but then you feel guilty for thinking like that . I know this to well and can relate to your words xx stay strong and vent away in your blog . I think your doing great xx

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    1. Thanks so much! I’m having this weird moment in life now where I want to always be with my dad but it’s weird and tense and not fun so I don’t want to be there at all. I’m sure you know the feeling too. Thanks for the support though! I’m glad there are other people out here that get what I’m going through.

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      1. Ah thank you! When I started this I was like ugh wtf am I doing but I really do hope someone stumbles across this and it helps! I’m glad I’ve found you already!

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      2. Same to you! I was going to comment on your post but since we’re chatting here I just wanted to let you know I’m excited to hear about your trip and I think what you ladies are doing is phenomenal!

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  2. These feelings are so normal – both for you and for him. He doesn’t want to be a burden and talking about his diagnosis makes it more real for him. Sleeping – being out of it – trying to push you away – they’re all ways for him to cope, and somewhere, in his mind, he thinks he’s helping by distancing himself.

    The important thing to remember is that it IS your dad. And he’s still in there. He’s scared and he’s angry and he’s afraid that he’s going to pass these feelings onto you. You already feel them too, but it’s different. My dad was always super snappy with all of us (even before diagnosis) but after it was godawful. We learned to deal with it and look past it… because in the end, the way that we treated him and the way that he treated us in the months after he got sick would be what we remembered after, but it wouldn’t be all that we remembered.

    Taking pills and medications and making his own decisions is one of the things that help to keep him feeling normal – like he still has control over some parts of his life; for my dad, it was his bank account and having us keep his bills paid how he wanted them – not what was convenient, but what he wanted. In addition, he was super SUPER

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  3. (sorry it cut off) super vocal about us keeping his star status at a local casino and about making sure the yard looked good; he had no control over his health or his surroundings, but he kept up what he could.

    You’re going to miss the old times, and the things you used to do. That’s natural – but a time will come when you miss the crankiness and the teasing too. You guys are all doing the best you can; none of you have been in this situation before. Don’t lose hope!

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    1. Thanks for your comment. It’s good to hear that I don’t sound like a total crazy. I guess yesterday my mom had a melt down with him while I was at work and he didn’t even realize he was being closed off. He was just trying to shield us from feeling sad for him. So when I got home the mood in the house was so much better. He was happy and watching his shows and talking about our trip that we’re leaving for tomorrow. It was such a relief.

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