January 3rd, 2011

My cover!

2011: Off to a good start...

...because my husband came home from the hospital today!!
And he looks...like he hasn't even been in the hospital.
Aside from the white wrist band on his right hand and a few lost pounds, you'd never guess he was an inpatient for 8 nights.

Eight nights.

People were asking me if this experience, his hospital stay, was like when he's gone overseas, in Indonesia or Cambodia or Africa.

Aside from the obvious fact that he's gone from home, the two circumstances were completely different. For one thing, he was close-close by and another thing he was SICK. Really sick. And I was worried. Really worried. When he's traveling abroad I worry, but in a different way.

I guess in some ways, this was easier because I got to see him a few times a day for long, IV pole strolls, but I know when he's traveling he is fine. He isn't worried. He isn't in pain. He is working.

Not my husband. But the props are right.

I can't stop thinking about a young guy on our ward who was visiting his wife all week.
I saw him in the cafeteria, alone in the lobby, with her, and then, yesterday, wiping a tear off his eye outside her room because, he said, the nurse couldn't get her line out. I'm not sure what it means, but the look on his face told me he couldn't stand the site of her in pain, so it must have been pretty bad. He said hello and commented on my daughter who I was pulling around in a red wagon and mentioned he and his wife have a 15 month old little girl at home.

A fifteen month old baby.

I don't know what his wife's condition was, but from the shaved patch on her head and the bleak expression in her eyes, I got the impression things weren't great. And she has a toddler at home? The weight of the world was on this guy's shoulders, I could tell he was trying to be strong for her, but man.

It's like, no matter what happens, there is always someone with something far worse happening, so with this, and with the trio of bad-luck items this past fall, I still feel so fortunate in general. My family is home together, most of us healthy, and D on his way to a full recovery.

That old phrase, "There before the grace of God go I," played over and over in my head this past week as we wound our way past empty children's cribs, made of metal bars, not wood. No cozy pink bedding to be found.

Yesterday, two Cambodian monks and about a dozen other Cambodian-American people D works with visited him. The monks gave him a blessing. D told me afterwards, most of the women were survivors of the Pol Pot genocide. Yet they are there, smiling at their doctor, worried about him, wishing him well.

We are blessed.

And believe me I know it.

Furthermore, weather claims no rain for a week, and the days are getting longer, and brighter.

This fills me with the kind of hope I need to feel. I like to feel.
Being disgruntled doesn't feel at all right on me.

So a proper Happy 2011 to you all.
Wishing you a year of Metta...a phrase my husband taught me that he learned from the monks. It means loving kindness.

Metta