I can't remember a week being as hard as this for a long time. Last night at 10 pm, I crawled into bed and fell asleep almost immediately, dreaming about the queen and how she was coming to tea while we were waiting for Tony Abbott to arrive. Tony Abbott appears in my dreams every now and then - at least he didn't turn up this time.
Thankfully work has not been too bad. That is a blessing.
Looking at it all logically, things are okay. Just some medical tests, a funeral and some upsetting news about my niece and by last night I was ready to fall into bed and sleep.
The medical tests were minor and everything looks okay - nothing too nefarious that can be sorted fairly easily. That is the good thing. Going in for the tests I wasn't too worried. It wasn't that perturbed about the actual tests. I've had this procedure before and other than some minor discomfort and a bit of a loss of dignity for a few minutes, all went well. Nothing really that awful, everything where it should be, all will be well.
What got me going about this was that the tests were held at the local IVF clinic scanning facility. Pictures of babies and pregnant women everywhere. As somebody who will never have their own children, I've reconciled with this fact - however there are times when this fact about my life can make me feed decidedly uncomfortable. This was one of those times.
Walking home from the hospital, I was out of sorts. I knew it. 15 minutes and three Krispy Kreme donuts later I admitted to myself that the half hour prior had left me rattled.
Admit it and move on. All that's okay now.
The following day I arrived at work at 7.30 am - stayed until 12.30 and proceeded to go to the funeral of a friend.
As funerals go, this one was one of the easier take. Eileen was a Freemason friend. She was the person who helped bump me in. She passed away quickly and peacefully about two weeks ago. She was 91.
I am honoured to have called her a friend and I'll miss her gentle, happy presence.
A couple of us carpooled out to the cemetery in the South Eastern suburbs. Alice, Angelica and Maureen joined me on the way out (Median age - about 60). The funeral service was followed by a short Masonic service, which was moving as it was intense.
There is something rather gut-wrenching about standing at the foot of a coffin, a sprig of acacia in my hand, saying goodbye.
Following this, the RSL gave a short service. Eileen was in the Women's Air Force in WWII.
We found out so much about her in the hour of the service. How she was great with animals. How she used to abuse the umpires at Windy Hill. How she and her husband Ray had been married for seventy years and four months.
As her husband was heard saying at a lull in the ceremony, she was the best thing to ever come out of Wagga Wagga.
It was lovely to hang out with most of the lodge out of lodge days. We had a good giggle on the way home as we dropped of Maureen, then came back here. We also worked out that in her 91 years, Eileen had the same haircut - it just depended on how long she cut it - it appeared that all it did was grow up. Bless.
As much as the day was a celebration, it was emotionally exhausting.
Needless to say, not that much work was done on Friday. Just shattered.
And then there is my niece, who's battling leukaemia. She ended up back in hospital mid-last week with an infection. As the chemo has effectively knocked out her immune system, this is a must when her temperature spikes.
Word back today is that she's been in intensive care after she had chest pains and couldn't breathe on Thursday night. They found that her lungs were clogged with fluid. Filling her with lasix, she pissed out something like three litres of fluid - she only weighs just over forty kilograms at the moment. Maths like that frightens me.
After all this, she then had a fit. If you're going to go into convulsions, I suppose intensive care is the place to do it, but I just wish she, and by extension, my sister and her family could cut a break. She back on more of an even keel now, spending the day having scans, MRIs and other tests to find out what's going on - but it's all incredibly hard.
And I'm here in Melbourne and all I can do is knit beanies.
I booked a ticket back to Adelaide for a weekend in a few weeks time. Hopefully by then, this awful stuff is over and she's back on an even keel.
So now, it's the weekend. I'm dividing my time between baking Barney's birthday cake, doing some study, knitting and trying to finish Alexis Wright's "The Swan Book" for book group on Tuesday. The last thing in the list is not that easy either. It's one of the most challenging reads I've ever met - and I recognise the book as a very important book - but gee, I could really use something lighter at the moment.
It's nice to have some time out, anyway.
May this hard, hard week finally be over.