Sunday, May 3, 2015

Surviving a Health Event

I'm not quite sure what I was thinking, but clearly I wasn't when I scheduled oral surgery for April 23rd, the day after Ed's sadiversary.  It was originally scheduled for February but due to my mother's health and care, I had to postpone a couple times.  As a wid friend said to me (yes, that's how we refer to each other, "wids"), "at least you get all your pain out of the way all at one time."  So true, since mixed up in with my grief of missing Ed and all the memories of each day two years ago, I added to that the sadness and fear of needing to go through this procedure by myself, with no one here to care for me or be by my side.

The procedure was a soft tissue graft to repair the gum near one tooth that had been damaged many years before.  I stocked up on soft foods and liquids which my diet would consist of for about 7-10 days.  On the day of the procedure I drove myself to and from the appointment.

No big deal until I got home and the Novocaine wore off.  I thought I was going to die and I wondered if this is the type of pain Ed tolerated in his last days.  It was awful and I couldn't distinguish if my tears were from the shear pain or that I was alone having to deal with it.  But I didn't have to wait long before the Vicodin kicked in and the intense pain subsided.

I spent the next several days at home resting, icing, eating lots of Italian ice and no talking.  They had said to limit talking and now I know why.  It definitely hurt more when I talked.  So a benefit of living alone...I was able to not talk at all for several days!

I am now 10 days past the procedure.  The last couple days have been more difficult than I expected until it was pointed out to me that I had been taking 800 mg of ibuprofen, three times a day, for the past week.  A single, over the counter, ibuprofen is 200 mg.  So taking one of those, once a day was definitely not doing the trick!  Once I increased the dosage (just yesterday), I began to feel much better.

Last night Dan and I went to a 40th birthday celebration for my niece Missy.  For the first time in 10 days I ate solid food!  I felt human again and the food was so good.  And I enjoyed carrying on conversations and talking with others without constant pain.  I'll be getting together with some wid friends today for more food and camaraderie.  I am probably overdoing it this weekend, but it will be worth it.

My first major health event since Ed passed and I survived.  I had friends and family in the wings if I needed any help.  But I didn't need it and I survived.

Now on to the next adventure which hopefully is less painful...we're redoing our kitchen!  But that's a story for another day...

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Two Year Sadiversary: A Note to Ed

I awoke this morning and the quiet and stillness in the house reminded me so much of those first days two years ago.  I feel the emptiness much more today.  I feel restless unsure of what to do with myself.  I want to pause and take the time to remember and honor you and feel my feelings.  At the same time, I have created a mental list in my head of all the things I could and should do with this day off.

Yes, I took the day off from work because I cannot imagine going to work, getting lost in the hustle and bustle of the day and fretting over unimportant things and not taking the time to stop and remember and honor you.  And I also know that others fretting over some deadline or pressuring me because they need some piece of critical information could set me off.  Because they would not know how unimportant these things really are.  That the important thing is the loved ones in your life.  But they would not know that today in particular my heart would be aching a bit more than usual and the tears would be so near the edge of my eyes ready to burst at the wrong word or comment.  So best not to torture those with some unexpected, crazy widow reaction, and stay home.

And being home, in our home, what we built together, wraps me in comfort and love.  The life we built together that I took for granted most days, I now cherish every memory.

I am still not quite sure how I will spend my day.  I know I will bring flowers to your grave and sit with you a while.  I don't necessarily feel closer to you there, but the grave is your final resting place and I feel a sense of obligation to care for it and watch over it and you.

Dan called last night and we chatted for quite a bit about the day.  Just everyday conversation and we don't talk often so it was a nice treat.  After we hung up and I went to sit down in your recliner, it was then that it hit me how we were spending our time together two years ago.  For although April 22nd is the day you passed, you died around 1:30 AM.  So it was the day before that was the last day Dan and I spent with you.  And it was the evening of April 21st that Dan and I said our last good-nights to you and came home.  We knew the end was near and we struggled in deciding whether to leave the hospital that night.

And it dawned on me that the day of April 22nd, two years ago, was about making phone calls and arrangements.  We were busy once again with "to do" lists and needing to get things done.  But it was the night before, the evening of April 21st, that were our last moments together.  I called Dan back last night and we shared memories of those last days and that last evening.  We shared what we remembered and we talked like we did that same evening two years ago.  And last night, Dan was there to support me, to allow me to cry and be sad, just like you asked him to do two years ago.

You always wondered if he ever really listened to you when you tried to teach him or coach him.  You know, that "in one ear, out the other".  Well, I can't speak to all those years throughout his childhood, but I can tell you he did listen and remember what you had to say those last days of your life.  He has been there to support me and be my rock and I know I am blessed to have him.  He is your legacy and I am forever grateful that you live on in him.

I love you Ed and miss you with all my heart every day but I do pause and remember you in particular on this sadiversary.