Thursday, June 3, 2010

Caregiving and The Booby Fairy

Deryl says....I can't believe it has been a week since I posted last. It has been a whirlwind of a week. After Kelley's sister left all the caregiving fell to me. I have loved being able to demonstrate my love to Kelley. It is just overwhelming to realize how much needs to be done. Not just the caregiving part but that plus the house, the girls, and work. I don't know what I would have done if people weren't bringing meals everyday. And thank you to everyone who has brought meals to us. You have made this much easier for us.

It has been nice to see Kelley get better and more independent everyday. That light in her eyes gets brighter and brighter. It is great because she has had some moments of fear, frustration and pain. It is easy to listen and try to calm her fears or vent her frustrations. But man, watching her suffer in pain. That is the worst part of this by far. To know your loved one is hurting and not being able to do anything about it is tough. You feel helpless and out of control. That is not a fun place to be. But fortunately as she gets better those memories fade quickly. The joy of getting drain tubes out or finding out that a complication is getting better replaces those old negative thoughts.

Watching Kelley become more of the wonderful person she is has been very charming. One of the greatest moments this week happened when I was in bed asleep. It was early in the morning. I felt this tapping on my leg. I thought one of the girls was trying to wake me up. I rolled over ready to answer the tap with a grumpy "What?!" when I saw that it was Kelley. She had crawled in to bed just so she could lay next to me because we have not laid next to one another since she had surgery. What I want you to realize is that this was no easy task for her and if she had not been able to wake me up there was no way she could have gotten back up on her own. I know it was painful and it was a risk for her to crawl up next to me. I could have rolled over in my sleep and hit her in a spot that could have caused her even more pain. That is why it was such a sweet gesture and meant so much to me.

When Kelley's sister was here helping it was easier. I almost thought "this is all there is to it?". Kelley was doing well. She didn't seem to be suffering nearly as much as I thought she would. Everything seemed to be getting done fairly easily. Then Kelley started taking less pain medication and trying to do more. And then Pam left and was no longer here to help. Then I was in my second week of not sleeping through the night so I could make sure Kelley took her medication And when Kelley tried to do more it would cause her pain. And that is when feelings of overwhelm would crop up. Which is unusual because it is not something I am used to feeling. But wondering how everything that needs to be done is going to get done has been just more overwhelming than I expected. You have to decide what you are going to let go of and what you are going to do because there is just no way to get it all done. Thankfully, we have been blessed with great family and friends who have been helping as much as they can. I don't know how people do this without the help of others. It could really drive someone off the deep end if they didn't have the kind of support we had. And Kelley being such a good and thoughtful patient also makes it so much easier. 

Kelly makes it as funny as possible. She keeps talking about when the booby fairy will visit. The other day we were watching the TV and there was a lady on in a bikini who must have had good boobs because Kelley yelled "Deryl look! I want those right there." Unfortunately I missed it but we laughed about how before she probably would have done something to take my attention away from the TV so I wouldn't see them and now she is yelling at me to look. My how life changes.

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