01 June 2009

Maybe You Can Relate.

So there I am, minding my own business wondering if my three part-time jobs will cover expenses for the next month when a good pal phones me with the news that our mutual Friend is dying of cancer. He says that said Friend wants me to accept Power of Attorney on his behalf, agree to a Representation Agreement (means that I and three others make medical decisions on his behalf when he can no longer do so) and become the executor, with one other, of his Will.

Well, those requests are hard to turn down, as I have known said Friend for 30 years!

Suddenly, my life is turned upside down. I take a leave of absence from one of the three jobs, dedicate myself to organizing other friends to spend time, cook, clean, do laundry, slot in massage treatments, sit with Friend, make sure his dog is fed and other sundry details too numerous to list. Not to mention spending many long hours with Friend, holding his hand, listening, commiserating and trying to understand the journey he is on.

The end is near.

Now it must be decided if he enters a palliative care facility far from his community or continues to stay home. Which means the added burden of travelling, of ensuring that medical aid is programmed to suit the circumstances, supporting the caring community of friends, making decisions regarding the medical care he receives, ensuring the burial requests are covered (he wants it to be "green"), comforting his teenage son and contacting overseas friends and relatives.

I am almost stretched beyond my limit as I care for my Friend. I love him, no question, even though we are poles apart as far as his life-style and mine are concerned.

I'm reeling. Can anyone relate?

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