Caring

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
A short story written for India Emerald's Flash Fiction Challenge. The subject word was 'Trapped'.

Submitted: July 30, 2017

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Submitted: July 30, 2017

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Caring.

 

My Mom, she needs me. I know she cannot look after herself, that it’s not her fault that she got sick. She had always been so supportive, always told me to follow my dreams and never let them go. But that was then, back before the illness struck.

Of course if Dad had seen fit to stick around I might have been in with some chance. He could of at least done his part in the day-to-day caring of a parent with Multiple Sclerosis. He could have taken responsibility, made decisions, assessed what was the right thing to do.

In truth he didn’t hang around too long, not after the diagnosis had been made. Too much to handle for him, I guess. He always valued his freedom above anything else in the world, and that obviously included his wife and daughter. Good riddance to him. I never want to hear or speak to him again.

I finished school. Okay, my grades slipped back quite a bit but I did graduate. Mom wasn’t too bad then, she could still sometimes get around. Some days she even managed to cook meals of some sort. It must have been hard for her, she had always so loved baking. I think she would have loved to have run her own catering company or something like that, but she had to give up her own dreams too. Dad was old-fashioned that way and believed a woman’s place was in the home.

Over the last couple of years her condition has steadily deteriorated. She cannot dress herself, wash herself. Some days she cannot use her arms at all, and most days she cannot manage to stand. I am her carer, full time. I go out to get shopping twice a week but that is all. The rest of the time I’m home, ready to help at a moment’s notice.

The doctors have told me that she could live for years like this. Sometimes she might improve, but overall there is going to be a steady decline. Things are not going to get any better. And sometimes I can’t help feeling resentment. I am twenty-two years old and I live the life of.......what? I don’t know what to compare it to, but I know that I am trapped.

Of course there are care homes but they do not come cheap. And Mom would hate it there, I know she would. I just cannot force myself to turn my back on her. And I cannot say that my life is worth more than hers. He walked out but I never will.

Eventually there will come a time when she will have to stay in hospital, or a hospice at least. I know that, and I think that she knows that too. But while I can manage to take care of her, I will. I owe her that, she is my Mom, and trapped into being here or not, that is where I’ll be.


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