December 11, 2011
I know I've been hard on you in the past, but right now, I'm writing this blog post as a way to offer some support....but also, as a way for me to talk to my friends about a very awkward subject.
Recently, you gave an interview about how you had to set aside your television career to help take care of your partner, who was diagnosed with a brain tumor. (For my dear readers, please check out Two Minute Time Lord's piece on the matter). I'm writing you this letter because I, too, had to suddenly pick up and leave because of care taking.
Circumstances, though, were different - it was my mother. And it was post-transplant care.
Gratefully, Mom also has home care (which I'm sure you'll be acquiring), but I wanted to use this as an opportunity to educate our mutual (and not-so-mutual) friends about how to handle caretakers.
Because people like you and I...give up quite a bit. Our lives are filled with caring, but it also means that our time is much more precious, and limited. It means that there will be some sacrifices to be made. But it also means that we have to be more willing to express our needs and wants, whether directly or (as in the case of this blog post) passive-aggressively.
For example, last year around this time - while everyone else was gearing up for the holiday, I was fighitng my mom's doctors and their wish to put her in a nursing home. (Thankfully, Mom ended up going home). For me, December 1 - 23 of 2010 were a blur....with me resenting some friends doing something nice for someone else and wondering, well, where the heck was my gift?
The answer is part of my unsolicited advice to you - that there are people who are doing cool things, but they're subtly cool. It's the person who asks you out for a coffee or some other beverage. It's the Facebook invite that you don't expect to get. And if you can get some time for yourself, Russell, please take it. You're taking on a huge task; getting those small moments of time for yourself is invaluable - trust me.
And finallly - if anyone tries to convince you that you're being selfish when you assert your rights, or share your feelings....they're not your friend. You're not asking for the world - just some consideration. You have a lot on your plate. Letting go of people who insist that this is your burden to carry without complaining...well, that's the best thing you can do. Trust me.
I realize this has been a bit rambling - I'm posting it because, quite frankly, I rarely - if ever - discuss this publicly. I'm hoping that this can be taken in the spirit in which it's offered.
Best wishes. I know it means putting your writing on the side, but it also means that you're willing to do the human, caring, right thing.
Thanks for everything, including Torchwood.