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I don't know about you but it seems like these darn holidays are never ending.. I used to look forward to July 4th..For years I had a cookout but since I stopped not one of my siblings even call to see what we are doing... No invites for us!

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Hope22, I love what Vegas just said! I do believe that your soul remains untouched and that your God is watching you and feels your angst. Now that you have reached the top of your anger and resentment, and the time to act by putting your mother in a NH, I think the next step is reclaiming your life. I believe God will help you come back to your natural joy within after that action is taken. At least you can learn how to deal with your mother from that distance from this site. You will have to let go and detach from the brother and mother, just as all of us have to do eventually. Might as well start now. And as in nature, something new sprouts up in the place where things have passed on: whether it is an attitude or a physical form.
And the heaven we seek, I believe, is in releasing these old painful thoughts we are experiencing now.

We don't have to believe ourselves to BE our emotions. You are HOPE, afterall! ;)

PS: dark circles under the eyes signal it's time to take care of your liver.
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An awful lot of us will be hanging out in h*ll together if all it took was a lot of screaming and losing our tempers when tired and frustrated. In fact, there's probably not enough room for all of us down there. Most caregivers will be on the UP escalator
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totally understand judda...but the kicker for me is that Mama prefers his company over mine....he has been selfish his entire life, she has spent most of her and Dad's finances over taking care of him and his sorry greedy family...he has never had to do one stinking thing that required work...the rare times he has done anything she paid him three times what it would have cost a professional to do it...including him bringing her a loaf of bread and some milk and her handing him fifty dollars for it...and I'm not joking...it is really coming home to roost for me...I am so tired that I am no longer able to ignore what has transpired over the past twenty plus years ...and now I am resenting the hell out of Mama and him....I fear I am going to h*ll for the way I feel tonight...what is wrong with me...trying to do the right thing but the funny thing is, in doing so, have totally lost my soul....my brother can do no wrong...which I guess is easy enough since he does NOTHING anyway..but I can't do enough and what I do is always wrong. I am spending what is left of my life feeding someone who can't feed themselves, talking and entertaining someone who can't or won't talk back and cleaning up one pile of crap after another...she can't move herself at all so I have to do all the lifting and rolling and moving and my back is going. I limp when I walk and I have black circles around my eyes...everyone sees it, but not one gives a crap. the only thing I already know is, my brother has already informed me they are not going to take care of her...he is her golden boy and he has said he isn't doing it...my Daddy saw it all for what it was...he knew...he talked to me about it...when I lost him I lost the last person on this earth who loved me...if he could talk to me now I think he would tell me he loves me, he is proud of me, and it is time for me to put her in a NH and not look back.... I am totally broken tonight...I screamed at Mama tonight...yes I am ashamed....and I fear hell yawns wide before me....but I am broken and can't see any fixing it....it's too late.
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Hey Hope, I have a brother like your SIL. He makes 6 figures a year, is treated like the Golden Boy, does nothing for my mother, hasn't visited us in 3 years and when we go see him all he talks about is his job, his dogs, or his pool. He has no interest in anyone but himself. How can he see himself as a success? Must have a whole different set of self made rules...? My mother often says she doesn't feel like she has a son, and I don't feel like I have a brother.
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After this weekend, pretty much see life as it is ...feels like something in my soul went "thud" and I feel completely dead....still breathing...but dead here.
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oops..meant to include this is the SIL who has made it clear she has no use for me, so sure....I LOVE to come up and listen to you b*tch and moan because yall can't decide what landscaping project you want to do next...told brother thanks but no, I don't feel welcome at your home.
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No celebration here either. Had someone try to invite themselves...Nope...not waiting on you hand and foot...already do that 24/7. Got one "invitation" from brother that he would stay with Mama and let me go visit with SIL at the palace on the lake...(this is the SIL who has not been to our home in over two years now, doesn't call, doesn't help, does nothing for anyone but herself...) opted for plan A, do nothing ...period. good thing. got 1 1/2 hours sleep the night before so felt like pure heck...after getting Mama's afternoon changing done, took me a nice long nap...got another text by the friend trying to invite themselves...again...no thank you ...taking a nap..buh bye....ended up grilling for ME and watch the Macy's fireworks on television followed by a Capitol Fourth..both excellent...enough celebrating for me....
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No celebration for us either, my sister did not even invite us to go watch fireworks. I did take my mom to her family reunion, that is the last time that happens too. Arguments with my mom and my sister made the 2.5 hour trip miserable and not one person showed any gratitude for all my efforts. NO MORE! We have a hard enough time on a day to day basis that I will not take on anymore holidays or celebrations.
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no invites for me either to go to bbqs or parties. I invited my parents over to see my new home but I was silly enough to think my mother would remember to tell my father (I know, right? what was I thinking?) so come Saturday I'm done with prepping for them to pop over and when I call I hear "so what time are you coming over?" what? I invited you over here! "well your father has gone through alot of trouble making dinner for us so what time are you coming over? But, you know dear if you ever want us to come see your new place we are just waiting for an invite..." hits head on desk at this point. So I give in and go to their house and try to have a conversation, which is impossible of course and meanwhile I think of my only other sibling who is 1000 miles away texting me about all the fun and parties he is invited to...arrrgh I guess if I had a more fun spirit these days maybe I'd have friends who wanted me around. At least some of you have husbands and children around so you're not completely alone. I don't even have that :(

My mom is fading. She asked me if my daughter was married. When I told her yes, she asked if she had been at her wedding. I told her yes. She got a sad look and said, "I dont' remember that." "That" was only 3 years ago. I know I should be grateful she is still here. I don't know many people my age with 2 living parents but sometimes its a burden being the only adult child who has to do so much for their emotional wellbeing and care. I know one day I will look back and scold myself for not appreciating these last years, yet on the other hand I still want a life too. Talk about guilt!

So, no parties, no bbq's for me this july 4th or any other holiday for that matter. I really truly dread Thanksgiving and Christmas when its only the 3 of us. This was not the life I had envisioned. I thought I'd have grown kids around with grandchildren under my feet. Instead everyone moved far away :(

Ok off my pity pot.
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and, I want to add the list of gratitude: I am celebrating that I am in a relatively free country (compared to other places on the planet), that I am not living in a war zone, that I have plenty to eat, to wear, and that I feel loved from within. I am grateful for who I am (with all my talents, flaws, and humor), and I am grateful that the Divine Director has given us our independence at the same time bestowing us with His/Her/It's unconditional love.

I offer a prayer for those whose land was stolen, whose lives were destroyed or enslaved by our forefathers, and I am grateful for the land we now stand on. I realize that each of us have an opportunity to make our own contribution to everyone's freedom in our community, our country, and in this world.
Happy July 4th!
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I want to add that I celebrated my own personal independence.
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How I spend my holidays as a single person providing what's needed for Mom;
I set a boundary: Friday I am going to choose what I want: deep cleaning my apartment, paying bills, getting caught up on things, planning my month and my business. Saturday (today) saw that Mom was bored and depressed. It was a great day weather wise. I could have been happy hiking by myself but instead I took mom for a drive (because she wasn't up to walking), we ate out, and then we went to her favorite thrift boutique store. Gotta give her credit: at 93 she still dyes her hair and dresses in outfits and still loves new clothes. We both were positive, and I didn't notice her double-wingers today. (that's a compliment that comes out as an insult.) But she still was complaining some. I ignored it as much as I could.

At one point I had a revelation. I said it with a warm smile, not as an insult: "Mom, you're the only person I know who considers boredom a disease!" She laughed and then kept on, "Well it's true, for me it is..."

It was a good day. We had fun really SHARED the day. She was most gracious and thanked me without adding her usual double-winger of guilt. I came home refreshed and ready to get back to work. A successful July 4th!
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For the past few years my significant other and I rarely celebrate holidays on the day they fall upon. And the smaller holidays, like July 4th is just another day on our calendar. He works for the Federal Government and his job requires him to be there, holiday or not. I can't remember the last times we had Christmas on December 25th.... it is usually the Sunday before Christmas, or the Sunday before Thanksgiving, etc. He will stop at my parents house and pick them up so they can have the holiday with us.

Otherwise my parents would be all by themselves.... hey, it's was their choice to stay in their single family house, and not move to a retirement community where they could be with other people.

Actually I like doing the holidays a week early.... less craziness for me. Then when S/O is working a holiday day, I can volunteer at the local hospital so I am not alone on a holiday :)
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Yahoo! I spoke to my SIL and she is more than happy to have the 4th of July cookout at her house.. And they can stay over.. Her son will stay at my house over night so that way she'll have a free bed...

I'm so relieved!!!
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The 4th of July was always one of our biggest holidays when I was growing up...right after Christmas and Thanksgiving....my Daddy loved it especially and we always had an enormous gathering...so it is melancholy a bit for me now but I think it's even worse when I try, knowing I can't live up to the hype these days...and the biggest thing is Mama doesn't even know it 's the 4th...I guess that, like on every other holiday, is what makes it all so hard...even if I had an enormous blow out, she still could not care less...all that seems to make a difference for her is just sitting beside her and holding her hand, and trying to make sure she knows I love her....so I think the less I do of the other, the less painful the memories are....I'm opting for the "lighter version" of the 4th for sure this year...
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Oh but I love the 4th of July!! It's my favorite Day! I have more decorations than you can imagine!

After living through a loooong New England winter it's my icing on the cake!

I just wish my life was less complicated...
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Regarding the making it special with your loved one...this past Saturday, during the Belmont, I sat beside Mama and talked to her about the race..we were pulling for California Chrome...and I held her hand...told her come on Mama, lets bring him home...she was so cute...she finally said...oh, I'm a nervous wreck...but we sat there and enjoyed the race and held hands and it was a very private and very sweet moment....I love those little moments...and something similar to this for 4th of July sounds good to me. I have discovered that I can put watermelon in my blender after removing the seeds and make Mama a watermelon slushie...she loves them, and full of good vitamins and nutrients and she gets to enjoy a taste of summer as well....now I have some cantelope and getting some blueberries and mangos to do the same with tomorrow.
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oh I soooo agree with you jeannegibbs..and love all your ideas!!
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I love Carol's first post, with the advice to " to lower our standards of 'celebration.'" We've had to ramp up our compassion, our patience, our care ... and something else has to give. Lowering standards that don't impact our loved one's and our quality of life is reasonable and often necessary.

Hostess is a role I love and it is one I missed a lot during my caregiving years. I didn't give it up entirely, but I did change my standards and expectations, and more and more limited it to family parties.

The 4th of July can be a low-expectations holiday. No gifts. No cards. No costumes. No special foods that take days to prepare. Fireworks at a nearby park or on television. Some Sousa marches on the CD player. Sitting on the porch or on the lawn watching neighborhood kids waving sparklers. Most restaurants and grocery stores are open for at least part of the day. Please, don't let this low-key holiday become a big source of stress. Sometime in the next couple of weeks pick up some patriotic themed paper plates or maybe some watermelon-printed paper napkins, and plan a picnic -- indoors, or in the backyard. Don't invite anyone else or only invite people who will add to your happiness that day.

There are some holidays -- such as Thanksgiving -- where a certain amount of stress is inevitable if you can't follow national and personal traditions. But the 4th of July? Hey, don't let it get you down. Anything goes. Take advantage of that. Make a Big Deal out of it privately with your loved one, if that suits you both, or acknowledge it in a small way (with red-white-and-blue paper plates) or ignore it altogether. Do what suits you. This is one holiday where you really don't "have" to do anything.
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" yell at me for being alive "
hehehehehehe
* sigh * im so sociable
if someone knocks on the door im going up the chimney -- outta here suckers !!
listening to molly hatchet again . great music but its pretty much all the same song.
beatin the odds,
twang , twang , twang ,
yea whiskey man ,
twang,
h*ll yow, son of the south,
twang ...

pretty sure their flood lights are mag flashlights ..
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Husband and I usually have to really search to have someone to have the holidays with. He has pre-dementia so really it is me looking. He would just be happy just sitting home reading. I am a social person and need a place to go. Our kids live far away. My sister lives a mile away but doesn't speak to me, unless it is to yell at me for being alive. But this year some friends asked us to their house and we are going.
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I can think of a few places I would like to place fireworks!
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Alice Cooper??? Captain, I KNEW there was something I liked about you!!
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blah , holidays . ill cut wood all by myself in the forest on july 4 and go see alice cooper on july 5 with someone or without .
youngest son isnt speaking to me . that means he isnt conning me , lying for weed money , or in any way making my life miserable .
i think i can do this " loner " thing .
ahhhh ..
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Well, I can understand that for sure. For me, my immediate family is my Mama....and that leads to a whole "nother" discussion.....we have always loved holidays...and the 4th of July is one that we really had a great time...but...now, as you said, always worried about watching my Mom and making sure she is ok, then having to do all the other in between....it is just so completely exhausting and I just am not going to do what I just got through doing on Memorial Day....I guess folks just do not think, but my nerves are shot and I am worn slap out and just do not have it in me anymore...I thought about telling my cousin if she wants to come, sure...just bring a bucket of chicken though as I am just too tired to cook anything...she would probably do that, but in all honesty, even the cooking is not what does me in...it's all of it together and me being the one who seems to be EXPECTED to make it all come together...how do other folks always seem to lead a charmed life and be the ones who show up with nothing but a smile and a big butt to sit on....
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The only one my Mom doesn't know it my sons girlfriend's mother.

You hit the nail on the head though, I'll bust my butt as usual while everyone has a relaxing time. It used to be fun I enjoyed doing it but now I have to constantly keep an eye on my Mom and deal with her dementia..

I really love spending time with my kids and holidays are always at my (their)home and I liked it that way... But now I feel like overwhelmed.

I don't want this to sound mean but for once I want to be able to spend time with my immediate family without it being all about my Mom.. But I never know how the day will go and that's what stresses me out.
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OMG assandache7, I just saw that other post in this thread...is that not the God's honest truth....feeling guilty all the time for not being able to do things for people we WANT to do things for for feeling like me also need to do things for others we might not necessarily need to go that out of the way for....sometimes I look at my entire life and realize I KNOW I have lived my life being a people pleaser and it has taken a toll on me...BIG TIME...and the kicker is...it has not mattered and it has, in fact, INVITED a lot of the criticism and abuse that just never seems to end....you mentioned your Mom would be going nuts over not knowing a lot of these people....is all the activity going to be worth it??? I am seriously having to deal with this myself right now and for me, going forward, the only ones who matter right now are of course Mama, but also me....because I am beyond fed up, beyond sick of all the d*mn lazy tail people who don't have a clue what we are going through and don't seem to get that one "family day" is like putting together a huge conference used to be for me in my former life....I don't get it...All my life I have "gotten it" knew when folks were overloaded, took so much stuff that they wouldn't have even needed to cook if they didn't want to...made them sit down while I did the dishes, cleared the kitchen, etc....picked up all the trash and waiting on the host as much as possible...and I was happy to do it....but then all that kind of mess is what got us all in this caregiving thing in the first place I'm guessing...can't win for losing
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UGH....holidays patooie........our last holiday....Memorial Day....a day which needs to be celebrated with reverance in the first place anyway..but this year I had put on my big Martha Stewart hat, invited the one person who does occasionally come and sit with Mama and she did offer to bring buns and chips...so I let her...that being said...I told her...and do come so that we can just relax and enjoy the day in a restful way...(she is notorious for getting here way past lunch and by then the day is over anyway)...WELL, this time she got here early all right..so early I had not even had my bath, had just barely gotten Mama ready ( and that was only because this was one of our days to have the health care aid bathe her...) anywhooooo...my guest gets here, and immediately goes for the sofa...sits down and never budged again, EXCEPT to fetch her plate after I had done all the cooking, running, changing Mama in between, feeding her as well since Mama can only "eat" the nutritional supplements now...and don't get me wrong, I love this person, but dear God in heaven, would someone who KNOWS how I have no help anyway kill themself by offering to do something...anything???? to top it off she stayed way into the night...cleaned up NOTHING, including clearing her own dishes from the patio table...it's not like I didn't mention it either, very politely told her, hey, how about grabbing that plate and stuff for me....(totally ignored me) hey, can you grab a diaper for me to change Mama??? (totally ignored) let me tell you by the time she left and I literally finally got up and opened the door and said...well, be careful going home....I had HAD it...I thought to myself, what in the H*** am I doing? killing myself so I can "celebrate"...when Mama could have not cared less whether we did anything..in fact, it all gets on her nerves I have discovered...so this before my "guest" left, she said...I've had such a fun day...you are going to have a hard time getting rid of me this summer....and in the back of my mind I thought "NO I'M NOT"....cause I'm not doing this again... combining this with a "whine of the day moment" I have to say...do people not understand what it would mean if they did something, anything...to help make it easier on me...my God, to see me running ragged, sweating up a storm (the south is no joke in the summer) grilling, running in and out of the kitchen....she didn't want anything to drink...until I was in there getting myself something...THEN she said I'll have some too....get over yourselves lazy rear "guests" either help or stay the H*** away.... Mama had her hospice re evaluation the other day and the nurse practitioner who came asked me, are you doing these things for her (Mama) or you??? I told him, you know, I guess I am doing it for me, to try to feel normal, anything to feel like I am living a normal life again...but somehow I'm thinking this is so NOT normal to invite people to literally abuse the priviledge...and I totally get it...it is ALL on me....and I'm the only one who can change it so this year the only grilling I will do, if I do any grilling, will be for me......and the only fireworks going on will be when I tune in that night, bunny slippers on feel, lounging shorts and tshirt , watching the celebrations on TV while Mama is resting sweetly beside me...the heck with all the hoopla.....
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I wish we did more to celebrate holidays. Mostly the days pass without any particular notice. I would like to do something special and different. Someday.
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It's not my siblings I care about. They are useless and we never hear from them. It's my own grown kids.. I feel bad because my son's girlfriend's Mom is visiting from out of state and he wants to come here on the 4th.. I previously told my SIL,BIL and there son who has Aspergers that they could come here's to a cookout and stay over, it's easier than us going to their house. Well my son and gf usually do their own thing on the 4th because they live in the city.. Now with her Mom visiting and they found out my SIL and her family are coming here so they want to come and stay over. AAARGGHH.. It used to be easy to put people here there and everywhere on air mattresses.. My Mom will be off her rocker! She doesn't know GF's Mom and I've only met her twice..

So I told him they could come but not stay over.. So now I feel bad that I told my SIL she and her family COULD stay over and my SON CAN'T. My daughter lives her too!

I know he's an adult and understands.. I just so stressful trying to please everyone..

This is why I get pissed at my sibs because they don't even have to deal with any of their Mom's dementia and I can't even have my own son over....
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