My brother and I

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My brother has been in hospital for 7 weeks. 9 weeks very poorly, but was out of hospital for 2 of those weeks. This has included two separate and extended stays in ICU for septic shock. Both times everyone including the Doctors were amazed at him surviving these. My brother has been seriously ill and paralysed for 21 years. Since our mum died 18 years ago, my sister and I have been his primary carers.

We love him. The thought of him dying paralyses me. And somehow, he is still alive.

The challenge for me, is living my own life at the same time.

I am so pleased that I have the challenge of hospital visits and dealing with bureaucracy- because these things mean he is alive. I am not complaining.

I often think, I can look after my brother, and vaguely run a school, try and meet the expectations of my 85 year old neighbour with alzheimers and dementia but looking after myself, gets totally lost in the mix. Unless a friend is feeding me, I either, at best don’t have anything to eat or at worst I am living on take-aways and sometimes a ready meal. I never know if it is ok to go away and see friends- “what if the hospital calls”… my life is dictated by hospital visits and how can I help my sister…

My brother is surviving at best, slowly dying at worse, but I have to live. And how to do that is the current challenge.

Thanks for listening.

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