Vulnerability and strength

My husband is in the hospital now, recovering from his colostomy reversal. The surgery was a success but I can already tell just from what I observed today that he is probably going to have a pretty painful recovery.

This hospitalization is so much different from when he was hospitalized almost 2 years ago for cancer. For one thing, Covid is now a factor, so I can’t stay there the whole time like I did during his prior hospitalization. For another thing, his hospital this time is in Dallas and requires nearly an hour’s drive each way. I’m finding it much harder to manage my time while visiting him and driving to and from the hospital. I have so many other things to get done that I’m not getting done.

Not being able to stay there around the clock makes me feel vulnerable and weird. I didn’t sleep well last night at all because I was nervous about the surgery. I’m not sure how well I’ll sleep tonight or any of the other nights he’s gone either because it’s just so weird that he’s not here.

In a weird sort of way, it makes me too easily able to imagine what it will be like when he’s never here anymore. Maybe I’m just having those thoughts because I’m pretty sleep-deprived. But I just feel unsettled and alone and scared and tired.

On the other hand, though, I also got a job offer today. It’s a job that I’ll be able to do 100 percent from home and it’s not first shift. It should be able to work with my schedule. I really hope that I’ll be able to do it because I’m so desperate to get off disability and feel more capable taking care of myself. This feels like the first big step toward proving that I can be strong.

I also recently got diagnosed with sleep apnea and should be getting treatment very soon, which I’m hoping will help a lot with feeling less tired.

Maybe it’s just because I’m alone for the next several days and I’m sleep-deprived, but I can too easily envision the rest of my life being like this, and I don’t like it at all.

I’m sure that once he gets home and we settle into a new normal with me working, things will feel better again. It just might be a little rough until then.

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