Respite 2

I had a headache last night.  It felt like someone was gently tapping on my meninges with an ice pick, just above my left eyebrow.  I don’t get migraines very often, probably because the usual trigger for my headache is a reduction in stress. And since I am stressed pretty much all of the time, I stay largely headache-free.  So why yesterday?  Because yesterday we had some respite. Following a brief visit last week, S came to help. We have agreed that she will come once a week for three hours to give us some home-based respite.  To be honest, I wasn’t sure how this would work.  S’s job is to support and care for R while the rest of us get on with our usual after-school activities.  I thought that it might be awkward.  I thought that she might be (or feel) in the way.  I wasn’t altogether convinced that it would be much help.  But it was. S read R stories, fed her a snack, tried to persuade her to use her Tobii and followed her around the house as she wandered from room to room, keeping her safe.  S did everything that I do while I tidy the kitchen, make the dinner, encourage EB to start her homework, help EB with her homework, separate F from his phone and do the laundry. Best of all, because S fed R her dinner, for the very first time since she was a baby, last night we sat down to eat together. R was initially a bit unsure.  But she quickly warmed to S and it was clear that she was rather enjoying the attention. S helped get R ready for bed and read her a bedtime story before she left.  EB found the whole thing rather thrilling.  She says it’s like having a nanny.  I am rather thrilled too.  Just not about the headache.

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