Sometimes I write a sentence that when I read it back, I discover that it really has a feeling that more should be said and that leaving it there, is like closing a door on what has to be said. I had that feeling yesterday, not about one sentence but about the last half of a paragraph, but time had taken over and to write more at that point just wasn’t possible, so that is where I am today.
I mentioned that I wanted our suite fixed long term as I didn’t want to leave Adam with a home that needs so much done to it that living here just wouldn’t be what I wanted after I die. I’m sure that different people took that in different ways, that is they way life is, but for me the reason is so easy, I am one of life’s nest builders. It hasn’t mattered where I lived, from the first rented flat to this the first home I have owned, I have always nested in it, making it as much an extension of myself and a place I could be proud of, as one that felt like home, a place to come home to that welcomed and cocooned as soon as the door was open. Everywhere I have lived, I have decorated, tweaked and preened to the nth degree, no detail to small or to complex existed, everything had to as perfect as possible where regardless whether they are friend or partner, they would be happy to be and a little thing like dieing, isn’t going to get in my way. I know without a doubt that although Adam loves our home, he isn’t as bothered as I am about how things look, having a suite hiding under throws didn’t seem to phase him at all, when one of the springs broke, that got his attention but appearance, never. It’s only one example of how he sees things differently from me and I know his nature completely, once I am no longer here to push through actions that make this place home, they will slow to almost a full stop. I don’t think men see homes in the same way as women, they are content to just have something comfy to sit on, how it looks, or it’s ability to last, well those things just don’t matter.
Before someone thinks it, I just want to make clear that I don’t want our home to be a mausoleum, not for a second. He can change whatever he wants and he will, but things like that don’t normally happen straight away, so I see it as essential, that at least until he is ready to change things, they will provide him with a home. I actually started the process a long time ago, not that long after I was diagnosed with PRMS. At that time I looked around our home to see that what we had was this strange mix of things mainly from my life prior to meeting Adam, along with the cheapest things we could find, which would allow us to move from a totally furnished rented flat, into an empty shell that was going to be home. I suddenly saw that I had a limited time ahead of me when I would still be working and that meant a limited time to make it a home, one that I would be comfortable in once housebound and one that would take care of Adam when I was gone. Internet shopping was still in its infancy, but I knew without a doubt there were bargains to be had and set to buying the best I could afford at the best price. No MDF, all our furniture had to be wood, badly fitting windows had to be replaced with double glassing, dusty drafty wooden floor were covered with thick underlayed carpets, dinner services, cutlery, table cloths, bedding and curtains all bought and replaced the cheap and the nasty. It took several years, but it was done and when I did become housebound, well we had our cocoon. White goods never last as long as we hope and yes most have been replaced, the most recent being our fridge freezer, the only thing that failed and hadn’t been fixed was the settees covers, the cost scared the hell out of me.
I know without the slightest doubt that Adam will slowly change and even sell some of the things I bought, like my beloved crystal which he hates as it constantly needs cleaning, although right now he says he won’t, but that is fine, in fact it’s actually good as it will be his home. I just want to be sure that he isn’t going to be trying to live here in a mess and a muddle struggling to pay bills, whilst needing money to repair and replace the most basic of things, just to be able to live. If my doctors are right about how long I have left, well our mortgage will be almost paid, I paid into to it the bulk of my redundancy, bringing down the payments to a level that means even whilst on benefits, we are managing so far and should continue to do so, with a small amount left to go when I’m gone. I have planned ahead as well as I can, with as much care I could when living with unpredictable health and I am not finished yet. Bit by bit I am doing what I can to make not just our future together the best I can, but to also ensure that the first few years after I am gone, if he wants to, well all he has to do is work and live, then when ready he can change the lot if that’s what he wants.
When you find yourself facing your own demise unlike what most people expect, well at least for me anyway, it wasn’t myself that I found myself thinking about the most. Yes, I went through a spell of grieving for myself, but once I can out of that, I instantly thought about Adam and what I could do to make the whole thing as easy as I could for him, I’m not kidding myself in anyway about what the future holds for both or either of us, but somehow I feel responsible for both of us. Being so much older than Adam I always knew that I would go first, even before I was diagnosed as being ill, I already had a long-term plan of what I was going to do for him and my daughter, then everything changed. Not being able to work changes all your plans, finances end the insurances you had and the possibility of ever replacing them, so then all we can do is plan the ephemeral, the things that bring comfort and nothing brings more comfort than a home.
Please read my blog from 2 years ago today – 29/01/13 – Disability living