Of all days, I chose today to empty out my purse. I was worried about the buckle breaking under the weight of my laptop and the assortment of grad school books and brain injury literature I’ve been carrying around.
As it turns out, the buckle broke anyway, just as I was heading back to the hospital after my grad class. That leaves me here: sitting in a hard plastic chair in the ER at 1:30am after hours of trying to calm down TC while simultaneously carrying around my defunct handbag. With no computer or book to keep me occupied, I sit here with my phone, dreaming about my bed, fighting to stay awake.
I haven’t yet mentioned or written about the assault on this blog. To be honest, I try to steer my brain away from those thoughts. Right now I can only afford to be focused on the present. Thoughts about what brought us here and fears about our financial/emotional future are far too grim and scary to confront most of the time.
But I’m angry. I’m frustrated. I’m in total disbelief of the situation. A few thugs needed some cash one night and went about it by bashing in my husband’s brain and crushing every plan and dream we had made for our future. They stole a crappy iPhone, a credit card they couldn’t even use, and my entire life. Anger doesn’t even get you to the starting line as far as I’m concerned.
However, If you take my anger and multiply it by infinity then you may come close to approaching TC’s mental state. I don’t take his anger personally (although “I hate you” is never fun to hear). I’m a public school teacher. No name I’ve been called in the past week compares to the abuse I’ve suffered at the hands of children over the past few years. If anything, I share in TC’s anger. His anger is totally, completely, 1000% justified – regardless of where it is directed at the moment.
It’s the pain that eats away at my remaining heart. Watching someone you love suffer in physical pain and severe mental anguish is an agony without adequate descriptors. It’s in our human nature to protect our loved ones from pain. Every parent who has ever spent the night awake with a crying baby knows what I’m talking about. It’s unbearable to witness pain of this magnitude.
Whether TC understood he was headed to rehab today or mistakingly thought he was going home, he was surely disappointed by the outcome. When I arrived at his new room just before 9pm tonight, he was fiercely trying to escape his restraining vest. The nurses had put this vest on to prevent TC from getting out of bed. As he struggled to strip it off, he took with him most of his hospital gown. All of the movement caused his trach to pull out from the hole in his neck, leaving a rather unsightly wound. Back to the hospital we headed, but not before fighting him tooth and nail to cooperate with the rehab doctors and nurses. It wasn’t pretty, but here we sit, in the ER, TC passed out from all the excitement, and me silently screaming for a hard drink.
First day of rehab complete. Let’s hope for a more successful tomorrow.