Those who are lucky are happy, and I’m happy to be lucky. No excuses.
– Participant in the show, Survivor
The reconstruction surgery didn’t go as long as smoothly as we would have liked. It lasted five and a half hours and will require more healing than we anticipated, but I think the relief of the surgery being over was felt both by me and her. As soon as the surgery was over, a storm hit the city. She was delirious but okay so I decided she was stable enough to go home for the night and get back first thing in the morning.
I woke up after 7 hours of sleep ( 2 more than I had been averaging) with a major knot in my stomach and a huge throbbing headache. I think the stress of the week that I had been internalizing came crashing in on me. I had read myself to sleep by reading he story of another husband who lost his wife to breast cancer. I read the synopsis and realized how lucky I am. I’ll write more about this book later. I quickly grabbed some ibuprophen and went to pick up some breakfast. She hadn’t eaten in 35 hours so she would be famished. Fortunately my mother had spent the night to watch the kids. After calling her parents to tell them she was okay, I arrived at the hospital. I would later find out that she had not told her parents before that they were going in to clear her margins some more. She had not told them as she didn’t want them to be worried.
I was not only the last visitor to check out the night before, but I was also the first visitor to check in that morning. Opening the door and seeing her sitting up and smiling was more than a relief. She was in pain still and a bit week but she was hereslf again. When she starts barking orders I know she’s fine. There weren’t side effects from nausea like the previous surgery. Both physicians came in and checked on her. They said it had been slightly more complicated than thought, but that it just required more adjustments.
We were able to check out by 11am and we were soon a family again. The children were happy to see their mother sleeping in her bed. It was a bonding experience. I left my son to watch his mother and get her anything she requested while I took or 6-year old daughter run errands to the pharmacy to pick up medicines, the deli to get sandwiches, and the card store to get my wife’s birthday card. As I ran the errands, I could only think of the book I was reading and squeezed my daughters hand. She was enjoying being my helper and I was enjoying the bonding time.
I slept the whole rest of the afternoon with my wife. I needed the rest and she held my hand. She requested sushi for dinner so I took the children out for sushi and brought back the leftovers. Dinner was different. A dinner for three instead of four. I saw people look at us. Was I divorced dad? A widower? It didn’t matter. I knew what I was feeling. I was thinking how much I wanted to be a complete family and how good that feels to me.
I told her I am so happy to still have her with me and feel so fortunate. I’ll never take her for granted again. This week isn’t going to slow down with the holidays upon us.
Her parents arrive on Tuesday and there are a bunch of “honey do’s” that I have to get done around the house before they arrive!