In which we hear of many dramas of the human kind.
My best friend, who is also my boss, just had a panic attack and walked out of the office. It's not the same office - I work in the Dublin branch, he works down in Cork. He's been working two jobs for the last couple of months, not because he desperately needs the money, but because he is a workaholic freak with superhuman amounts of energy. By day he's an IT contractor on a doomed, mega-budget project, and by night and at the weekends he runs a restaurant and cafe in one of Ireland's most popular stately homes. Last weekend he catered a wedding for 150 people, worked flat out from 7am until 11pm on Saturday and Sunday, tried to come into work again on Monday and just couldn't move out of bed. He made it in today, developed a severe headache, tried to text people to tell them he was going to go home, and found himself unable to spell. He then sat at his desk crying until he called me to say that he wanted to leave the office but didn't know how. He phoned me and I had to talk him through the process of shutting down his PC, getting his coat, leaving the office and going across the road to a hotel where he could sit and have a cup of tea and wait for his head to sort itself out. I think he'll be OK, I'm calling him back again in a bit.
Three years ago he nearly died of a very serious illness that they think was a form of TB-related meningitis. His brain swelled up so much that he hallucinated continually in hospital for weeks and his personality changed completely for quite a long time. For weeks, he says that he couldn't understand people when they spoke, and he couldn't form words properly. He would gabble nonsense at his visitors, and freak out when they came into his room because "It felt like they were pressed right up against me even when they were across the room." Now, every time he gets a headache he gets panic attack symptoms that can involve not being able to understand people, and not being able to talk or think. They're not true recurrences of the illness, but some kind of trick his brain plays on him, like acid flashbacks - all the same, every time it happens, he's terrified, and starts thinking he's going to end up back in hospital and turn into a vegetable this time.
I just called him again, and he's feeling better. The panic has subsided and he's going to go to his doctor and take the rest of the week off work. Real-time drama for your viewing pleasure!
In "other news", Jo had another mostly sleepless night with Joshua, who is being cranky. He was very peaceful the whole of yesterday, then turned cranky today. There is no pattern. We have looked for one and there is none. I took a long lunch and Jo slept while I carried Josh around the flat, pointing at things while he got distracted enough to forget he was supposed to be upset. He has discovered that it gets lots of extra activity going if he wees on us during nappy time, so that has been happening more often too. Doesn't make much of a difference to my clothes, but it upsets Jo :-)
My sister hates her job. Not just that, but I suspect she hates her entire field of work. She's a corporate lawyer and I think it's making her miserable. She's 30 and she wants to start a family, but her boyfriend is 25 and doesn't (yet). She just doesn't know where her life is heading, and it's making her depressed I think. I'm getting all this via my mother because I think she wants to keep it from me. I have a new baby and I'm too busy, would probably be the rationale. In reality, when I'm busy is when I have most time for people. Maybe I'll give her a call.
I feel OK. My non-iron shirt needs ironing and I'm drinking too much tea and eating WAY too much chocolate, but other than that I'm coping.
I nearly forgot to mention - my granny
, Joshua's great-granny, came to the apartment the other day to see him. She held him very confidently and cooed over him. She's a tiny, frail woman of 89, but her hands are big and strong from decades of gardening, and it was so lovely seeing the look on her face as she talked baby-talk
to him. It wasn't all baby-talk either. "Do you know that we're at opposite ends of life? That you're at the beginning of life and I'm at the end? Do you know that?" she said, in the same cheerful tone of voice as she had just said "Who's a beautiful baby boy? Oh, you are, you are!" Her husband died this year - taken into hospital for pneumonia
, he had a massive heart attack. They'd been married for more than 60 years. She's been giving away money to her relatives - "I don't need it any more." There's nothing wrong with her right now, but sometimes you just know that someone is preparing to exit, and doesn't feel bad about it at all. I love her and I love being around her, and I always have, ever since I was a baby myself.