I’m writing this perched awkwardly on the end of my bed, with the computer balanced on a lap tray. How come? Let me explain.
My younger brother David has Down’s Syndrome, and since Mum died last summer I’m his surviving family. Most of the time he lives in a small family-type home in Somerset, where he’s very happy indeed. But come the holidays, all the other residents go home to their parents, like he used to do. So this Easter, he’s with us. I asked Yi before I fetched him for some advice on how to manage, and received Hexagram 33, unchanging: Retreat.
David is being terrific. He’s polite, considerate and good-tempered. He turns up quietly at my shoulder when I’m washing up and picks up a tea-towel. He thanks me sincerely for every meal I cook. I have nothing to complain about at all. But he does mumble away to himself and his imaginary friends the whole time, and he does like sitting in my room when I’m trying to work.
I tell myself that this is just a matter of concentration.
I know Yi suggested Retreat, and that seems a very attractive idea just now, but I simply need to focus in on my work and I won’t even notice.
It’s just a matter of fighting down my irritation…
…and choosing not to be exasperated, because it’s not as if David could help it, so being vexed with him would make no sense at all…
David is contentedly watching TV (the TV’s in the same room as my desk). I’m perched on the end of my bed with a laptray, completely out of earshot, in perfect peace. My inner piglet is no longer squealing and scrabbling, and presently I shall go and start negotiations about what to cook this evening.