I’ve written about true friends in the past and how I consider my neighbours really true friends and even consider them part of the family, so much so that we send each other brother and sister birthday cards etc, which is great.
This time I’m going to have a winge!, not about me and my friends, but how Charito has had to learn a difficult lesson.
As you know I’m always praising my wife Charito for the effort that she has been putting in both physically, mentally and financially to help us both deal with the Myeloma cancer.
She works three Jobs and sometimes when it is her holiday from the other jobs, she will take on another small job for those few weeks she has to have off from the other ones. None of these Jobs are particular fantastic and to be honest she is far more intelligent than people take her for. For example, most people don’t know that she took a Journalism Degree in her own country for TV/Media or that she used to run one of the top restaurants as a Manager for many years.
She is one of the most dedicated people that you could employ, never being late no matter what, if she had to get up at 4am to walk to work in the freezing cold, she would do so rather than let someone down.
Charito has not had any time off really during the last two years of my treatment, it’s been difficult for us both; I’ve found it really hard to let her do so much work without resting and at times hardly seeing each other by the time she gets home from work.
All the hard work she has been doing has been taking it’s toll on her own body and I’ve tried to get her to slow down. A few weeks back she hurt her leg, which at first we thought was a pulled muscle due to riding her bicycle to work. After a week had gone past her leg was still hurting, but she continued to work. I tried to get her to go to the doctor to get it looked at, but she didn’t want to let anyone down at work by having the time off, even though she was in a lot of pain. When I could, I have been driving her to work, rather than her having to walk to a bus stop which isn’t that close or get a tax which end up being expensive. It nearly cost the amount in taxi/petrol than it does for the amount of time that she works in the part time jobs per day.
Charito’s leg didn’t seem to be getting better and it was clear to me that it was something more than just a muscle and I finally persuaded her to make an appointment with the doctor, which would mean she would have to have the morning off work, as appointment are made on the same day. We have to ring up at 8am and they tell you what time to come in that day. She had already arranged with her manager of one of the jobs, that she would be going to the doctors on that day.
So on the Friday we called and made an appointment which happened to be at 11:40am, even though she had already informed her manager that she was going on the Friday, she had a phone call asking where she was! She then went on to complain and wanted to know why she couldn’t make the appointment for next week when she off! When I heard about this I was fuming, she had already been in pain for three weeks and her boss wanted to her go another week, because it was inconvenient for her to have Charito off for that one day. She needed to go to the doctor on that day as it was hurting now, not next week, (although it probably still would be hurting).
So that was the first thing that made me angry and more importantly upset Charito as she felt she was letting someone down. Even though I explained that her manager was in the wrong and she shouldn’t get upset over it.
When Charito had seen the doctor, it was confirmed that it was more than I pulled muscled, she had tendonitis, which is damage to the tendon in her upper and lower thigh. The doctor insists that she has complete rest of her leg and signed her off work for two weeks and she may need to go the physiotherapy, depending on the recovery.
This just proved the point to me that Charito has been doing too much and really needed to rest. As a previous manager, I also know that it would be illegal for her to continue to work once she had the doctor sign her off work, as if she went to work and did any further damage or had an accident, she would not be covered by any insurance by the company as she is not supposed to working on the premises as the doctor had signed her off.
I explained all of this to Charito and although she was upset still at letting people down, she insisted on going to see her Manager to give her the doctors note straight away, although when we got to where she was working, the manager was too busy to see her!!! (scream!) It was a good job I didn’t get to talk to her.
So that was point one of being angry, but that was not what Charito was most upset about. Previously to hurting her leg she had arranged to cover for a friend (I use that term very loosely here). It was to cover for a few weeks her friends job while her friend went home to Peru to see her family over Christmas. Again this was only a cleaning job, but she arranged to do it more of a favour than for the extra money as due to financial situation now, it wouldn’t really make any difference with tax credits etc. but that’s another story.
Charito said she would still go and do this job for her friend and I said she couldn’t for the same reasons, but really wanted too, we were both getting angry and stressed over it, but she realised in the end that she couldn’t and she agreed it would only make things worse for her leg and even though she would be losing out on some money, we could still cope. So she felt a little better about it, but wasn’t looking forward to letting her friend down.
When we were home and she called her friend to let her her know, she came off the phone very very upset, not only had her friend been shouting at her down the phone, she wanted to know why she arranged to help and then only to let her down, she accused her of basically doing it on purpose as she knew her leg was hurting. (obviously Charito didn’t know her leg was so bad at that time as she was pushing through the pain each day). The thing that hurt Charito the most was her so called friend calling her selfish! Something that Charito is definitely not. It took me a while to calm her down and make a realise that if she was a true friend she would have understood that her health comes first and that she would never be doing something like that on purpose, as if she could. How ridiculous.
I was so angry and stressed, but tried to stay calm and reassure Charito (which for those that know me well, will know that I would have been fuming inside and ready to verbally rip this friend to bits – can you tell I’m still a little angry )
This friend was supposed to be dropping a little parcel off for Charito’s family in Peru, as we did for her mother last time we were there. However friend (HA!) during the same phone call told her she couldn’t take the 1kg package as it was too much extra luggage. So Charito has agreed to get it back and we will send it in the post as normal.
It has been a hard lesson for Charito to learn that not all so called friends are real friends. She still has some other friends here, mostly polish, who are really lovely. We can’t stop making new friends and finding really true one, but it is a hard lesson to learn.
At least now Charito is feeling better after calming down and trying to de-stress. Even after a few days off work, she has started to realise how stressed and overworked she had become. These next two weeks she be really good for her.
I love you Charito and so do your family and true friends – I can never praise you enough for the help and support you have given me and even though some people don’t say it enough, in there hearts I know they appreciate and love you dearly.
Yes this has been a rant on my part, but if I don’t say it, nothing will be done. I haven’t named the person, but if they read the blog, not sure if they do. Then they will know how much hurt and pain they have caused to my wife and I’m not prepared just to sit back and say nothing. Charito doesn’t know I’ve written about this and I’m sure she will find out and she may not like it either, but I written it because I love Charito and I know you would never complain like I do .