Posts Tagged ‘husband’

Requisite Cliff-Hanger Update

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

Turned out husband had appendicitis.

Terrible dehydration because he didn’t drink anything the night he spent in pain and confusion, then wasn’t allowed to eat or drink anything the full day while they were diagnosing him, and the full night after his surgery he couldn’t have anything either, which means more than 36 hours with nothing at all.

Had some mild complications after coming home after surgery, including a post-operative fever of 104 degrees that led to a trip back to the hospital by ambulance and another hospital stay for some IV antibiotics.

Finally made it home for good, and two of his ribs popped out a bit from his spine, sending his whole back into spasm.  Was super painful, and is still lingering.  Probably something to do with either drug-induced heavy sleeping, or contorting in a waiting room chair, or something his muscles did while he was convulsing from the fever or curled up in pain from the appendix.  Not fun.

Many, many, many nights without sleep for both of us, but he is now kind of sort of getting better.

I am hanging in there as well as I can with no sleep and tons of stress (neither of which are good for keeping this illness at bay).  But I’ve been the full-time caregiver in this house for the past week.  Am doing WAY better than I might have guessed (thank you, Equilibrant!), but I won’t say there wasn’t a point this past weekend where I was literally crying because my husband needed pillows under his legs to take the strain off his surgery site, and I realized they were all the way at the other end of the hall.  And I was lying on the floor, because my legs just would not carry me anymore no matter how hard I pushed.

It’s been a long time since I’ve reached that point.  But this time, thankfully, I recovered some eventually, and it didn’t become my new normal.  I’m resting every second I can, and not doing much else besides sleeping and fetching meals, but I’m getting through it, and I’m reasonably certain that I won’t have any major lasting damage as a result if all keeps going as it has been.  Of course, there’s no guarantee and very little predictability with this illness, but I’m hopeful that I should bounce back.

I have to bounce back.

Please, please let me bounce back.

But he is okay, and home, and safe, and that’s the most important thing by far.

Painful Truths

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

So my husband was awake all night from severe abdominal pain.

This morning he called the health line we have here, and they advised him to go to the E.R.

I feel awful for him and the rough night he’s had.  I’m concerned for him, of course, but I’m not overly worried at this point. Hopefully it’s nothing serious, and hopefully he’s in good hands regardless.

But it’s been a painful reminder of the impact my own illness can have. My husband is in severe pain, in the ER right now, and I couldn’t drive him there. I am not with him. I am not holding his hand. I am not talking him through it or being his rock. I can’t fulfill my role as the calm-in-a-crisis one. If something serious happened, I wouldn’t even know until somebody got around to calling me, and if they did, I don’t know how I would come see him anyway (though, somehow, I would FIND A WAY). I can’t push my own wheelchair around. I can’t even really sit up for long enough in a regular wheelchair for somebody else to push it around for me. I would need a caregiver.  And my caregiver is my husband.  And wanting desperately to help him isn’t enough to make me able to.

I can’t even entirely help myself.  I don’t even know what I’m going to eat today. Thank goodness there are leftovers in the fridge, and new groceries so there should be things I can grab haphazardly to gnaw on. I’m not well enough to fix myself even a simple meal without payback. I’m getting closer, but I’m not there yet. And if I was ever on my own long enough that the groceries ran out, I would be completely reliant on finding someone else to get some for me. It’s literally not possible for me to get them myself anymore.

I will be fine today, but they’re difficult realizations to have pushed to the forefront.  Wanting something really badly isn’t enough to make my body capable of it.

I cannot care for myself independently. And that’s a damned scary thought.

I cannot care for him either. And that’s so very much worse.

I once read a whole TV remote instruction manual in a sexy voice. That time was intentional, though. …Probably best not to ask.

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

So we’ve determined that I have an Inappropriate Sexy Voice that manifests completely unintentionally on rare occasions, when I’m trying to say totally mundane things. Breathless, sultry, loaded with promise, and COMPLETELY OUT OF PLACE FOR THE SITUATION. My inner vixendom apparently cannot be contained. Also, it may be a good thing that no one’s ever asked me to give a eulogy.

This afternoon, my husband briefly emerged from the home office, where he slaves away during the days. I got up from the couch for a drive by hug on my way down the hall (because I’m all about efficiency).

Husband: Mmmm… Don’t squeeze too hard, though. I really just came out here to use the bathroom.

Me: Damn. I was about to use the bathroom.

Husband: It’s okay. You can use it first. Just turn on the fan if you’re going to poop.

Me: *completely unintentional over-the-top sexy voice* …I will.

The confused horror was probably to be expected, really. He seemed to feel that bathroom activities and sexy time should never fraternize that closely in this house. I told him that I cannot control Inappropriate Sexy Voice. It has a mind of its own. Sometimes there’s lingerie involved, sometimes we’re talking about infrastructure reform. It’s the burden we have to bear.

Some things just cannot be explained.

Where my mind goes

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

My husband walks into the house carrying bags after a trip to the grocery store:

Him:  You know what a little bird told me?

Me (excited to see what niftiness he may have brought home for me):  What?

Him:  Tweet.

Me: …It’s interesting that wildlife is now trying to get you onto Twitter.

Him:  They’re very persistent about it.

Me:  Birds are big proponents of social media like that.

Him (begins to put groceries away, going on with things)

Me:  I totally want to put together a flash mob where everyone is dressed like the Flash.

I would totally do that too.

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

Interactions with my husband this evening have lead me to consider the perspective of dividing  the world into “People Who Would Do A Dance Number About Grilled Chicken On Command” and “People Who Would Not Do A Dance Number About Grilled Chicken On Command”.  This may or may not have been inspired by discovering that my husband is the former.  :)

Which are you?

Received via e-mail

Friday, June 17th, 2011

First Message: Re the scheduling…_^O^_

Second Message: That was supposed to be a shrug, but apparently Batman will take care of it.

Letting Go

Saturday, May 14th, 2011

I wish that I was able to write here more right now. I think it might help me to be able to chronicle my struggles more in this venue. It’s a sad irony that the times I need to write the most are the times that I am least able to. I’m sure it’s the same for lots of people for lots of different reasons.

I will not say that today has been the easiest day. I’m struggling a lot with coming to terms with how helpless I really am right now in many ways, and how little control I have over my own life anymore (like…dude…I just want to be able to pick out which pair of underwear I’ll end up in for the day so I don’t have to wear the misshapen granny panties if that happens to be what my husband decides to grab). It’s a hard balance, and I know that my husband is working crazy hard just to keep us afloat and keep me fed and watered and occasionally bathed. I have to choose my battles when it comes to where to exert my will and where to just stay silent and let things slide. But it’s a tough adjustment to make, and there’s a surprising feeling of loss that comes from all the little things that you aren’t able to have control over in a situation like this. I can’t straighten things around the house when they’re bothering me. I can’t prioritize which errands need doing. I can’t control how he decides to file tax receipts or health records, or if they end up carefully filed at all (I am a meticulous person in many ways. He hates that stuff. I was always the one who took care of it for us). I can’t justify comment when the pillowcase or towel he chooses for something is totally bizarre, or when I can see my careful care and organization of our household totally turned on its ear (I’m not a super neat freak, but I am very organized. It’s hard to see things all jumbled everywhere. Maybe that says something about my psyche). My hair looks kind of crazy. I won’t get a shower as often as I’d wish. I don’t get to pick out which socks I’ll end up in going out (though I have trained my husband to just reach for something kind of neutral to avoid bigger wardrobe idiosyncrasies than I’m prepared to weather well). I don’t often choose my clothes. It’s amazing how many personal freedoms and venues for personal expression one takes for granted normally.

And I don’t mean to imply by any of this that my husband isn’t being great. It’s just that it is kind of daunting how much time it really takes to take care of two people’s normal duties (even just the essential ones) and another person’s daily needs, so he’s already run pretty ragged. And there is a limited threshold for how much I can try to use him as my hands directly, and where I just have to entrust things to him and give up direct involvement or control. He is not my hands. He is his hands. And he needs to do things his way. And things that were important to me to spend time or energy on will not always be important to him. But learning to accept that and let go of things that were important to me is really hard. And sad in its own way.

It doesn’t help that we’re both pretty stressed out these days much of the time. Sometimes we keep it under the surface more than others, but this is a big adjustment. And scary thoughts and statistically poor prognoses and lack of relaxation time and huge hits to the bank account don’t always make it easy to find a happy calm. Though we’re working toward it.

So this post is not as happy a one as I would normally like it to be. But I’m trying to be honest here as much as possible, and this side of things is definitely a part of the experience.

On the plus side, once I’m feeling better I have a great story to tell you about being stuck in the back of a car for a couple of hours that was initially supposed to be only one, with the sun unexpectedly beating down on me and turning it into a sauna, and lawn maintenance people staring at me, and accidentally setting off the car alarm trying to get the door open for some air (we were running late on the way back from an appointment and my husband had a work meeting he couldn’t miss – they’ve been really great so far about giving him some flexibility to be able to take me to my many appointments so we don’t want to do anything to strain their willingness. I volunteered to wait lying down in the back of the car. He didn’t lock me in there or anything. ;) Yet). The whole time I just couldn’t stop thinking that I wish I had a laptop so I could be blogging the absurdity of the situation. Or maybe I just have a bit of a broken sense of humour. :) Either way, knowing that you guys might someday be able to laugh at my expense made it all that much easier to bear. ;)

And thank you all again for the comments and notes and all of that. I have not always been able to reply directly to all of them, but every one has been just a wonderful help to me. Truly. I don’t want you to think that they don’t mean a ton because if wasn’t able to comment back. Those tend to be the times that I needed them the most. I’m really grateful for the support.

Techie Humour

Sunday, March 6th, 2011

My husband and I were completing a crossword puzzle together today. Clue: “King’s domain”

Me: Kingdom? Castle? Chess board?
Husband: www.royalfamily.com?

I  love that man.

Digestive issues continue to be…issue-like. Though I am now making some progress in at least identifying the food items that might be responsible.  Not the ones like dairy or gluten that I originally cut out to test for, but the ones that were left in the rotation after those ones were gone.  I can’t say anything definitively yet, but by eating certain food products on their own as a test, I at least have some idea of which components might be the ones still making my body unhappy. I’ll tell you, though. Diligent science is painful. Especially when it involves things like tall glasses of unflavoured brown rice protein powder mixed in nothing but water, or tablespoons of straight olive oil. Blech.

(seriously, plain protein powder in water is maybe the most disgusting thing I have ever consumed. Fine in smoothies, distinctly NOT FINE on it’s own)

I poured my husband and I a champagne glass of sparkling water with a splash of apple juice this evening. Sometimes he makes dinner, and I sit on a stool nearby and we chat and have a glass of wine. I like that. I didn’t want to lose it just because we can’t actually have the wine right now.

It wasn’t the important part anyway.

Five Question Friday – “Behavioural Change” Edition

Friday, January 21st, 2011

I stumbled upon this set of slides via Finding Optimism. Useful insight on how to change any behaviour more successfully, and backed by research.  Most of the ten are things that I knew already, but not all are things that I pay enough attention to. I think I rely way too much on motivation and willpower rather than changes to other things, and then feel badly when I don’t end up accomplishing my goals. Anyway, something to think about. Plus, the set of slides in the margins when I went to the site was about encouraging people to text about vegetables. Sweet.

On to the questions! As per usual, they come originally from Mama M‘s site, and your own responses are welcome in the comments. Sharing answers is even more fun than vegetable texting. Vexting, if you will. Anyway, it’s better.

The Questions:

1. Where did you meet your spouse and did you instantly know it was love?
2. What is your favorite room in your house?
3. Can you wiggle your ears?
4. What is your evening ritual?
5. How many hours of sleep do you need to function?

My Answers:

1. Where did you meet your spouse and did you instantly know it was love?
The first times I laid eyes on him were at a few social gatherings with very large groups of people (we were connected by the same extended group of acquaintances, but didn’t hang out in the same smaller circles). And to be honest, I was attracted to him and we interacted in a way that was kind of intoxicating, but I wouldn’t have guessed that years later we’d be a couple.

Once we started traveling in the same circles and I really got the chance to talk to him and get to know him, I knew that I was incredibly drawn to him, but it wasn’t entirely romantic at first. Within the first few months, I knew with disturbing certainty that I needed to be close to him, and would protect him at all cost, and connected with him like nobody else, and did not want to lose him as a part of my life. But we had ourselves sincerely convinced (in ways that seem highly amusing now) that we could just be very unusually close friends. I was in another relationship at the time, and somehow my brain just didn’t make the connection that if that relationship dissolved, maybe my now-hubby and I could get together. I distinctly remember having the thought that I might never actually be able to have a lasting romantic relationship in my life. Ever.  Because what man would understand that I needed to spend so much time with my now-husband? And that now-husband would need to live beside us. And sometimes I just needed to hold him for a while, fully clothed and in a platonic way. It sounds so incredibly deluded now, but at the time it was a sincerely scary thought. But I would have traded marriage or romantic relationships of any kind to have the depth of my friendship with him.  Really, the whole start of our relationship was intense, and odd, and kind of surreal.

So no, I knew it was a more powerful and all-encompassing love than I had felt before, but I didn’t know it was romantic love. …Although I probably damned well should have.

2. What is your favorite room in your house?

I like our kitchen best, I think. The bathroom is good too (the wall behind the tub is all stones). And the guest room, because it’s decorated all peaceful-like. And the high ceilings and big windows in the living room.  And the brightly-coloured lime fizz entry way.  Pretty much I just like our house. Which is great, because before we moved in, there were some CRAZY decorating choices going on.

Why, oh why, did they have to cover the entire house in wallpaper?? ...And if they did, why did it have to look like 1986 threw up on the walls?

And for some reason, they'd had the house on the market a while without being able to sell it at full price. ...Did I mention that the carpet in this room was a ragged dusty rose? No? Well it was.

3. Can you wiggle your ears?
Only with my hands.   But I can also wiggle other people’s ears, if I’m close enough.

4. What is your evening ritual?
Sometimes a TV show cuddled up with my husband on the couch, (then I grab my mouth guard and stuff, but you didn’t really want to know that, did you?), then get into bed, then some reading, then the boy-cat joins me and wants to be spooned, then sleep.

5. How many hours of sleep do you need to function?
To function well? At least 9, but I very rarely get that. I am passable with 8, moody with 7, dazed with 6, and very, very strange with 5 or lower.

Like…stranger than I usually am.

Murr-y Christmas

Saturday, December 25th, 2010

Why is it “Merry” Christmas anyway? No other events are merry. You don’t wish someone a Merry Birthday or a Merry New Year. Come to think of it, pretty much everything is happy except for Christmas. Happy Thanksgiving, Happy Valentine’s Day. Maybe I’ll start changing it up a little. I think Arbor Day deserves to be merry.

Our Christmas schedule is a little off the norm this year. My sister has a seasonal job this holiday season, and not in town, so we’re having our Christmas Eve on the 29th and Christmas Day on the 30th. We did something similar last year, and it actually worked out well. In the mean time, the husband is off on holidays and we have the chance at some quality time together, which it kind of a delightful way to gear up for the more intensive social holiday stuff. Our holiday schedule looks something like this:

Dec 24th – Take care of any remaining holiday-related errands and chores; play games; chat; take walk
Dec 25th – Dinner with the husband’s sister (who is nominally Jewish);
Dec 26th – 28th – Days dedicated to fun, bonding activities, enjoying each other’s company, and purchasing and playing an RPG video game together (it’s sort of tradition now). These are the sweet days, with lots of great stuff for both of us. They’ve been closely guarded and protected from other social commitments. :)
Dec. 29th and 30th – Hosting Christmas with my little sister. There may be cheese involved.
Dec. 31st – Hosting New Year’s for a few friends (mostly pretty low key)

…And somewhere in there we’re also supposed to see a friend of mine who is in town only every few years or so. Probably also at our place. I like hosting much better than driving, though, so it’s okay. :)

It’s a different Christmas tradition than I was used to, but it’s a nice one, and something I look forward to. This is definitely the best part of the Christmas season, when I can forget about any overtones of obligation and stress and planning and decision-making, and just enjoy a time of relaxation and indulgence.

And oh yes, there will be indulgence.

Boy-cat is loving the Christmas season. I mean, to start with, we imported a real live pine tree JUST FOR HIM. And then we strung it up with sparkly bits and things that look fun to bat around. Because we’re good owners like that. Plus, board games mean lots of box lids to attempt to cram himself into (as a side note, 16 long pounds of cat does not fit well into a typically-sized game box. Just sayin’. He sort of lies there curled up with a fur-filled muffin top hanging over the edge). It occurred to me yesterday to wonder if it’s weird to him that when the game is over we pick him up out of the box so that we can pack it up. I mean, imagine you were sleeping in bed, and some giant came over and picked you up out of it. And they didn’t even really want anything from you. They just sort of deposited you on the carpet and went about their business. He must think we’re totally bizarre.

The health of our girl-cat seems to be continuing to improve as well. She’s still feeling vulnerable, and consequently still a little testy with the boy-cat (who looks hurt and confused and heartbreakingly innocent every time he comes over to say hello and she hisses at him), but the rest of the time she’s making her normal murring noises and very slowly getting back to a more normal state of things. She’s even been released from our Intensive-Care-Ward/Isolation-Chamber/The-Place-Where-We-Poop and back into the rest of the house. Progress indeed.

So from everyone here, with and without fur, currently using computer monitors or trying with a raging lack of success to hide behind them with their nose, tail, and a multitude of fur hanging out (*cough* girl-cat *cough*), we wish you a safe and happy winter holiday of your choice.

cat standing by table

owl ornament

We purchased this ornament this year because it reminded us so much of our girl-cat. Something about the expression, I think.

cat face

See?

cat looking at Christmas tree

cat by Christmas tree

cats lying under Christmas tree

Being cute is hard work

cat under Christmas tree
cat hiding in Christmas tree

cat with face in camera

Christmas in 3-D