Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Day 1119: The Strong One

HH's surgery was this morning.  He had to be at the surgery place by 5 AM.  We were both on edge last night, so not a lot of sleep happened for either of us.  I dropped him off and then hurried back to our sleeping kiddos.  I briefly thought about going back to bed, but I knew there was no way I'd sleep until the surgery was long over, so I just got ready for the day instead.

I'll skip over the rest of the morning to the point where HH was "awake" and brought back to me.  (Although, I really do feel the need to interject a bit here about Darling A.  She was the talk of the center!  Word spread like wildfire between the nurses and they all took a moment to wander down to our room to check her out and coo and awe over her.  The first thing the surgeon said when he came to tell me the surgery was over and to explain it all was, "I hear you have a really cute baby."  It is so fun being her mama.)

The tear ended up actually being multiple tears and points of concern, so the surgery took longer and HH was pretty distraught as he was coming around from the anesthesia.  I know people get a little nutty at that point, but his was just grumpy and sad.  And it broke my heart.  His fits and pouts brought me to tears on multiple occasions, but I held it in because I knew that wouldn't help him any.  I just tried to be calm and reassuring, but he was so out of it, I don't know that I helped at all.  He oscillated back and forth between being so upset and angry and then just so very sad.  I now know where my boys get their devastating pout from--their daddy!

He would emphatically state, "I just wish I could feel my hand!" (they'd done a general block to numb his entire arm and shoulder.  Unfortunately, there was one spot that didn't take and was still quite painful for him) and the silliness of the statement would have me about ready to burst into laughter, but then his pout would come and he'd look off with the saddest expression and it was all I could do to keep from crying.

We spent the next hour and a half trying to get his pain level down.  I don't know why I said "we".  It's not like there was anything I could do about it.  I tried distracting him with chatter, but it didn't seem to help.  I felt so bad for him and so completely helpless to do anything for him.  He kept apologizing to me and it only made me feel worse because what does he need to be sorry about?!

Finally, the decision was made that he would stay the night, rather than come home with me.  They'd put him on some morphine and that was finally taking the edge of the pain, but he could only have that if he stayed there.

So, they took him to a new room and I left.  And I felt guilty because I couldn't get out of there fast enough.  It was just so miserable being there and seeing him that way and not being able to help in the least.  I picked Baby B up from an awesome friend who had kept him all morning.

And then I came home and just gradually fell apart inside.  I tried to just take a break for a bit while the kids napped, but when Sweet P and Little M got home from school, I realized I was only barely holding it together.  They were pretty bummed when I told them that Daddy wouldn't be coming home until tomorrow.  And I agreed whole heartedly.

The rest of the afternoon and evening was just rough.  I had a few minor breakdowns, but I knew that if I lost it as bad as I felt like losing it, the kids would be totally freaked.  So, when people called about the surgery, I had to just tell everyone that we were doing fine because I knew if I told the truth at all, I would completely fall apart.

I thought I could be the strong one.  I thought I could handle this.  But, I'm pretty much a wreck.  Seeing HH like that just messed me up.  I miss him and I'm worried about him.  I mean, I know he's going to be fine.  And I'm so so so thankful this is just shoulder surgery and not something more serious.  But that feeling of helplessness while he suffered was indescribable.

But, I have to be the strong one.  He needs me to be okay with the drastic changes this is going to make in our home for the next few months.  I don't want him to feel guilty.  I'm glad he had the surgery, so he can get better and regain better quality of life and not be limited by the pain the tears were causing.  And really, I know I can do it.  It's just so much easier to be strong when he's here beside me.  I need two of him.  One that is hurting and recuperating and one that is fine and can hold me so I can fall apart, just a little bit.

1 comment:

Amy said...

Oh Cheryl, I'm so sorry. I could tell it was rough on the phone yesterday, but not just HOW rough. I'm so sorry.
I know you can do this though. You are amazing. I've always looked up to you (sometimes it bugged me because that seems backwards...) and I know that you have this inner strength that will carry you through. I'll keep you and Blake in my prayers. Hope his recovery gets off to a better start today.