Life is exhausting.
Yesterday, Tim had surgery on his ankle to correct three problems that has lead his 31-year-old ankle to that of a 65-year-old man's. It was the first time in our over 11 year marriage that he's been the one in the hosptial bed instead of me. It was awful. Scary. Nerve-wracking.
Ankle surgery really doesn't sound like a big deal, especially when you consider all our family has been through. No major organs are being cut up and the patient usually gets to go home the same day. I tried to explain this to Tim in the couple weeks before his surgery though it didn't seem to calm his fears much. The only other time he's had surgery was when he was a kid (which he doesn't remember) so of course the fears of the unknown were exagerated: his allergies to medicine, the unknown reactions to anesthesia. I kept my mind in work and home matters and didn't really give it much of a thought... until they took him back to the operating room.
Except when Tim sprained his ankle 4 years ago and a few days with the flu, he's always been the one that takes care of me and the kids when we're sick. He's strong and usually knows how to put up a front when he's worried about one of us medically. The first time Kharter was severly sick and vomitting, I panicked and he kept a calm, cool, collected attitude. I tried to do the same for him this week. I think for the most part I was successful.
As I sat in the lobby I tried to preoccupy myself with a book, loud music and Facebook from the iPod. The surgery was supposed to take an hour. All of my preoccupations worked until it had been almost two hours and he was still listed as in surgery on the patient tracking monitor. All the fears crept into my head and started to terrify me. I couldn't help but remember how difficult it was to see my dad in the hospital. The man I remembered never being sick or injured; until he started to die of cancer. The similaries in Tim and my dad are uncanny. They look nothing alike though if you put Tim and my brother-in-law Jerry together, you have my dad. I guess what they say is true, women really do marry their fathers. But, if that's true, does that mean we'll have the same ending?
I turned the music up louder.
Alas, surgery was over and I was walking back to his post-op room. I was so relieved to see him though he was, of course, still waking up and not "with it". He looked up at me and said, "My ankle hurts." I couldn't help but giggle and say, "I'm not surprised."
The surgery went as planned. They were able to make the neccesary corrections and though he will only recover to about 70%, he will recover. And now, I'm charged with taking care of him as he has taken care of me. I am up for the challenge.
I hope I do a better job this time.