I often compare my caregiving life to that of friends of mine with kiddos and one definite advantage they have is the final evening time for themselves. (There are plenty of ways they have it harder but that’s not the point of this post.) Mom on the other hand stays up until midnight or 1am most nights, which is a challenge because it means that I have no personal time in the evening. I am pretty good at working on paying bills and a lot of other work while she watches TV and we usually do some chores together, but it’s not easy for me to have my own personal time in the house. My better time is in the morning.
For most of my life, when Mom was the responsible adult that she was, she was solidly in bed reading a book by 10pm. Now, I occasionally find myself watching TV with her at midnight and she will happily suggest another show. We have managed to watch our way through several series, to the point that I am running out of that sweet spot of shows that we can both tolerate. To be fair, I tend to be doing something else when we watch TV together, but I still reach my limit with some of her preferred shows. In our first 6 months together, I started to feel that I had learned more about the British monarchy than certainly I had ever planned to know. We worked our way through the Tudors and the probably 12 movies made about Queen Elizabeth. The first one that is. Queen Victoria seems to feature in quite a few films also. At some point over the Christmas holidays, I hit my limit and told Mom we were watching a sci-fi apocalyptic show that I randomly found. It’s not my usual choice but felt many happy miles from anything involving a royal family.
It entertains me the delight that she finds in staying up too late, watching TV. The sense of shirking responsibility for fun does not get old, apparently even when you are retired and without a lot of daily demands.