This week my inspiration comes from my husband. Monday morning I woke up to find out that my husband had been awake and sick all night. Really SICK! He was fairly sure (and so was I once he told me) that it was his gallbladder. We headed to the doctor and he sent us to the ER. By Monday afternoon hubby was in surgery having his gallbladder removed. He stayed overnight and came home Tuesday. He’s done really well with his recovery (much better than I did with mine) and he was already off the pain meds and ready to return to work by Thursday.
This week has given me a chance to wear his shoes, and vice versa, as the caregiving roles were reversed, and I feel like I’ve learned a little bit and it was good for both of us to see the other side. So, what have I learned?
- Stay Calm – I think I am fairly calm in emergency situations, but I was reminded this week just how important that is. Had I allowed myself to stress out over his situation it would have made things much worse for me, sending me into a flare that would have created a much worse situation for both of us this week.
- Take Advantage of Help / Ask for It – When the surgeon first came in Monday he told us he was checking hubby into the hospital and he’d be there overnight. Then when he returned to let us know he was doing surgery he said he might let him go home after the surgery. Um NOPE! I was already dead, but had to keep going (I’d been dealing with a bug all weekend and was just getting over it). There was no way I could handle having him come home Monday night still groggy and in post-surgery pain. So, when the surgery was over I asked the Dr to let him stay the night (I’d already discussed this with hubby and he had agreed). Then there was school. Because he was coming home on Tuesday I emailed my instructors and let them know I wouldn’t be in class. This also involved making arrangements to make up tests, and turn in assignments in alternate ways. Had I not made those arrangements I would have been a lot more stressed on Tuesday, and a lot more tired all week.
- Take Shortcuts – on the way home from the hospital on Tuesday I stopped at Mason Dixon Bakery & Bistro and picked up some pre-made Paleo meals to get us through the week. One less thing to stress over. Not only did it make sure we had easy meals for the week, but it made sure he had easy meals if I wasn’t home.
- Remember the difference between Should & Need – Hubby does a LOT around the house and a week like this reminds me of that. Trying to fill his shoes I’ve had to focus only on what NEEDS to be done and ignore the things I’m feeling like I should do.
I think maybe these role reversals are good on occasion. I’ve seen how difficult it is to watch your partner do things you know they shouldn’t do. I’ve gotten a chance to take care of him for a change. I’ve done my best to stay patient. And, yes, I’ve overdone it myself as I’ve ended up doing a few things that he usually does for me. It’s all been a balancing act, but I’ve done my best. That’s all any of us can do.