My brother is a research scientist and he sets up medical appointments whenever he wants to see his mother. This means that I drive her down - take a day out - so he can visit and Mum and Mum gets more exhausting tests - which confuse her for days. Tests that never until last week relate to her memory loss or dementia, he is in denial of this. Two weeks ago I get a call from my brother saying Mum has blood loss somewhere because her iron is low - so I go through all her pads. The week before she might have a bladder infection - so I put her on antibiotics (every six hours first day) then two every night. Four days later he phones up saying he's very worried it looks like her creatinine levels are high or low - I can't remember. Its never ending - he just makes appointments - and he does not even need to leave the hospital - as all the appointments are at his own hospital. I was breathing so heavily - as two days ago we went downtown (2 hour drive there and four hours to get back) for an MRI and he talked to the Neurologist when I was caring for Mum - did not invite me into here the results with the Neurologist - and no word on Vascular Dementia - just something about having some recent neuropathy. Nothing else. He does not help out with Mother's care in any other way. Mum is very clear she does not want to go or be with her other children that she loves - but does not want to live with. Somehow this has created sibling rivalry - when my Brother mentioned that there was sibling rivalry - now after all these years of my caring for Mum - when my partner left partly because of the full time demands of caregiving for someone who wasn't her Mum, for giving up work opportunities so I could work from home to care for my Mother through dementia (stage 4 or 5 - by my assessment), with no recognition of the demands, and no financial support - that he can well afford - to find out he feels sibling rivalry - I just wept and wept over the phone - in the fetal position on the floor - like I never had in my life before - because two weeks before I'd taken Mum to his place for 4 days for his birthday and so Mum could be with her grandchildren and so I could keep mum in as familiar routine with her principle caregiver. This was not even something Mum cared to do - but just to be of service to the whole family. I have done this for years - and now I'm in need of support - my sister and brother are not there - in fact they are more demanding than ever. I have never felt so angry and disappointed. I would find it easier to have them out of my mind and life - and just get on with my life - and new endeavors, relationships and find solutions for a more balanced life while going on the journey with Mum to do everything I can to keep her the SWEET person she is - and happy. She is now singing most of what she says - and trying to rhyme - I asked her why - she say because I make her so happy that she wants to sing all the time. This is so precious - and in this I'm lucky - and grateful - and I guess this makes my brother and sister jealous. But it has taken real sacrifice for me to bring my Mum to , and for a while I've been sacrificing even my stay at home work to provide full time care, cleaning cooking, entertainment and everything else - and I'm getting angry very easily.
Ok, I guess I mentioned my sister, to get a fuller picture. My father was a alcoholic throughout our childhood, my brother was 19 years older and was in Oxford getting one degree after another, while Dad got kicked out of Australia - yes - but that's another story - then from one province to another until we ended in Edmonton on Welfare. My sister Caro has not recovered from this and of course the shadow of it runs through our family - and I've spent much of my life exploring how to straighten this out and live without co-dependence etc, etc. And here I am now - how amusing at some levels. ;-) However my sister has not self-examined her life. I used to help us escape from Dad and she was simply afraid more often - and had abuse earlier in her life - so I understand that it makes her emotionally driven. Its a two hour drive as she is well out in the country - I'm at the edge of Toronto in the country - between my Brother and Sister. I made one condition for my sister, that she would let me know in advance of her coming to visit Mum - so I could schedule shopping or visits to friends etc. In three months of say 20 visits she has called me say 5 times - only on one of those five time did she actually come down on the day she stated. Today she was waiting at Starbucks at 8am - and asking me to pick her up - she came spontaneously as her dog just died - which he did - and so I brought her here and will again need to drive her back. However she has a crisis each and every time - a headache and a very good reason - as her life is chaos. How can I have a heart with all of this? Live my life and provide the best care and love for my Mum? Not sure I know the way through.