Progress takes time
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Many of you know that my DH is experiencing some health issues - actually, several different health issues have come along in a very short time frame. None of them, individually, are life threatening - just difficult to deal with. All these things coming together has triggered his anxiety, that had been managed quite well for the last few years, to skyrocket. We have seen three different doctors for three separate issues keeping his primary care doctor appraised of each event.
My thought, knowing this wonderful man as well as I do, is that the anxiety has triggered most of these issues (that, and the fact that he did not listen to his wife when she told him he needed to EXERCISE!). That last issue is a very painful back caused by a Sacroiliac Joint injury - probably brought on by the excessive shoveling he had to do this winter. But that issue has to be on hold until we resolve a couple other problems, which means he is in a lot of pain AND feels lousy.
In addition, about 10 days ago he began having trouble swallowing and started eating less and less. This is also likely a result of the anxiety. He has been prescribed a new anti-anxiety medication but we are only 2 weeks in so I anticipate another couple of weeks before it stops causing dizziness and sensory issues (he LOVES science fiction but he can't seem to watch that kind of programming right now).
Today he and I had yet another chat about how he wants to proceed with things (you can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink - same with husbands, at least mine). He said he's tried and tried to control his anxiety and why isn't he getting better.
WHAT I replied! A week ago he looked like he had died but forgot to lie down. He was pale, he didn't smile, and he sat in the recliner (yes, Daisy recliner) for hours at a time just looking out the window or resting his eyes. He could barely take his medications and his food intake was a couple small glasses of milk, a very small bowl of cereal for breakfast and lunch, and while he tried to have some creamed soup for dinner he wouldn't be able to get much down. He was so weak in the mornings that I had to get my walked up from downstairs and it took the the two of us to get him up.
Today I am looking at a much different person. He smiles - and I have always loved his smile. He even laughed a bit while we were watching a Hallmark movie. He had a medium-sized bowl of cereal this morning, some cream of chicken soup for lunch, AND he took a second helping of mashed potatoes for dinner. He is drinking one Ensure each day along with at least three glasses of milk. He's gotten up by himself the last two days and he's even gone downstairs into his art studio to take care of a few things. Yesterday we had a visit from my daughter and little Jake and while DH didn't want to hold him (feeling too weak) he did play with him from afar.
I have seen the tiniest bits of progress each day this week and I couldn't be more pleased. I had to remind him that although all these issues have surfaced in a rather short period of time, it took months, and maybe years, to get here. It may take more than a week to heal!
For myself, I have been scaling down my expectations. This spring we were going to get a couple loads of dirt to spread around our old tree (her roots are popping out all over), to fill in the garden a bit (the bunnies won), and I wanted to add some dirt to the back of our yard so I can plant some wildflowers (I already have the seeds). Well - that may be too aggressive for a woman who is trying to take care of her DH, do all the chores he usually does along with some additional chores because he has been ill, and still find some time to do my own exercise, relax a bit and just enjoy life.
I dream of having a beautifully landscaped back yard with flowers and flowering shrubs lining the stone path - but then I have also dreamed of living on a horse ranch with my trusty horse Buttermilk (Dale Evens horse). Some dreams just aren't going to happen. My dream now is to get my DH healthy so he and I can enjoy life!
Oh - and I have to say one thing to all you wonderful Spark Friends. Without you I would be so lost. I have received so much support over the past couple of weeks and I thank you all for being the amazing people you are!