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I've gone into complete panic mode. Verging on hibernation mode. Please help.

(1000 Posts)
JackieandJudy Sun 15-Jul-12 15:39:00

Dh is ill, and has been since just after we met. Over the years we've had so much to deal with, and I think it would be fair to say that I have dealt with most of it reasonably well (I'm generally ok at coping when things are going wrong, it's usually afterwards I have a bit of a wobble).

The situation is slightly different this time in that, instead of finding ourselves in the middle of an emergency, he has a planned operation coming up for next Monday. And I'm so bloody scared. The odds we have been given are not good. I can't stop thinking about Monday and am constantly doing the "what if ...?" thing. The elder dc know it's serious stuff coming up and are scared themselves, hence are looking to us for guidance and reassurance. I've tried but today I'm all out of trying and have locked myself in the bedroom. Smallest dc knows Dad has to go to hospital but is oblivious of the wider implications.

I'm shaking constantly. I keep crying at random moments (yes, that was me in Sainsbury's who cried when I dropped the apples!), I can't do this for another week. But I have to. I don't want to talk to rl friends as I will cry and I don't want anyone feeling sorry for me anyway.

But I'm happy to listen if any of you lovely ladies have any ways to help me get through this week, and possibly after. sad

skyebluesapphire Sat 21-Jul-12 00:04:53

JandJ - just read this right the way through (have been on holiday so missed this one), I hope that the op isnt postponed for too long and that you stay focused. You have had some great support on here.

sadwidow - your story brought a tear to my eye. We lost my aunt aged 65 to lung cancer last December, she lasted just over 12 months from diagnosis after chemo (was given 3 months without it). Im glad that you shared such love with your husband, that is something truly special to hold on to.

sadwidow28 Sat 21-Jul-12 00:53:04

I had 25 wonderful years with DH. Whilst neither of us wanted it to end, we were so grateful that we each had found our 'special person' who was 'the other half of ourselves'. <Trite, I know!>

He wasn't perfect - but neither am I. We made a formidable team together. If someone kicked him then I bled! And vice versa.

JandJ - you can do this!

I know what you are saying about your DH being better able to hold onto the bigger picture. On Monday June 18th when we were told (together) that the doctors had got the diagnosis wrong, I don't know how we got through the next 4 hours. I had sat by DH's hospital bedside from noon until 9pm every day for 2 weeks. When the Consultant left, I hugged him and he saw my leaky eyes. He said "No time for tears now my love." I said, "I know, I just don't want to lose you." DH said, "And I don't want to be lost, but there's nowt we can do about it now."

That day he asked me to give him some space so I drove home again, cried on my own and then went back for 6pm. He had somehow 'got his head round it'. That was when he said he wanted to come home as soon as he could and asked me if I could cope with his medication and immobility. (He couldn't walk or even shuffle himself up in the bed by this time. If he slumped off his pillows he would start to suffocate. He had to be turned every 2 hours to prevent bed sores.)

I didn't hesitate - we actually knew that we didn't want anyone else involved in 'the end'. It was going to be HIS way and I was the one who could give that to him. I learnt how to give him insulin injections (and I am needle-phobic); I flexed my muscles so that I could carry oxygen cylindars out of the chemist into the boot of my car; I learnt how to bed-bath and how to work the hoist. I had our home re-vamped for disabled access within a week so that I could get him in and out in his wheelchair.

JandJ, my DH never had a black day once he had got his head round 'the end'. Honestly, he didn't. He coped far better than I did. I think that your DH has reached 'acceptance' like my DH did. They don't give up ..... they just somehow accept that 'whatever will be, will be' far quicker than you can and I did. ("There's nowt we can do about it now").

But I organised some male carer help for an hour each evening - and I had a bubble bath and cried in silence for a few minutes and then reflected on the great day we had had.

Now, I have LN here JandJ (asleep in bed) and I am taking him on a narrowboat for a week starting tomorrow. I have been out today and bought an 02 dongle so that I can stay in touch with you. But if it doesn't work, Izzy and others will be on the thread. I just don't want you to think that if I disappear for 7 days that I have been upset about our discussion tonight. I am not. You asked the question so you were ready to hear the answer.

Take care - you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

<goes off to read the dongle manual>

skyebluesapphire Sat 21-Jul-12 01:38:17

Sad widow - that is lovely, not trite. I felt that way about my STBXH, that we were the other half of each other. sadly he stopped feeling it for me... I hope that means that my soulmate is still out there somewhere.....

It is lovely to hear a love story , just sorry it had a sad ending..

sadwidow28 Sat 21-Jul-12 02:12:34

Skyblue - I log into your thread every day to see how you are doing. I am so glad that you and DD had a great holiday. You are truly amazing! (Apart from when you do those silly text arguments grin ) I don't post on your thread because I have no advice to give - but I think now that I should have posted to give you my support.

Don't feel too much sadness for me......I was loved to the last breath that my DH could muster (and I know it).

How some of you are coping with the rubbish that you have had to face from philandering men is beyond my comprehension.

<shudders>

My DH didn't have a choice about leaving me - so I have never felt rejection, humiliation, inadequacy, self-doubt. It isn't that you deserved to feel those emotions, but I see from reading lots of threads in here that it seems to be a pattern.

What both groups share are the same emotions of denial, shock, depression, anger and acceptance. It isn't a linear process, you have to re-visit some stages to 'finish them off'

You will get to 'acceptance' Skyeblue. Trust me!

I didn't reach 'acceptance' for nearly 3 years and it took a lot of counselling to get there!

Pommymumof3 Sat 21-Jul-12 08:21:27

Hi J and J I am new here and just stumbled across your thread. I just want you to know that you are not alone, and that I have been there....
Please feel free to PM me if you wish. I am happy to help support you in any way that I can.
Sending positive vibes xx

foolonthehill Sat 21-Jul-12 09:54:04

JandJ today is a day that might not have happened.....

much love to you and all

skyebluesapphire Sat 21-Jul-12 11:05:56

sad widow - thanks for the support. I feel guilty sometimes for grieving for my H because he didn't die, but I suppose the process is the same because of the sudden shock and loss in my case there was no warning that he was unhappy. I was chatting to a friends mum whose H had a form of leukaemia for fifteen years and she said it was worse for me because she had time to come to terms with it whereas I didn't. I was amazed by her saying that and very touched. It makes me feel like a fraud though.

I think people who have that wonderful love for a lifetime are very lucky and I can only aspire to finding that one day.

I wish you well.

Sorry jandj for hijack of thread!! How are you doing?

izzyizin Sat 21-Jul-12 11:25:45

When I dip into my book of memorable quotes and sayings, it seems as if the thoughts for the day are beginning to choose themselves and this little gem leapt off the page:

'Live with no excuses. Love with no regrets'.

lazarusb Sat 21-Jul-12 12:36:06

J & J - I hope you are today and the sun is shining where you are. I hope you get some news in the next 2 or 3 three days about your dh's op and you can start preparing yourself (again!). Your bravery is amazing - don't worry too much about middle of the night wobbles- everything seems worse then, glad your ds's arrival was timely! smile

SW - your words had me in tears. My dad lost his partner 17 years ago and he always said it was better than when my mum left him (for his bf) because there was only love in the end. His anger was directed at something he couldn't name, rather than a person. It's lovely that even in the face of something so painful, you have positive memories of an horrendous time and experience. I hope you enjoy your week away.

foolonthehill Sat 21-Jul-12 22:24:55

JandJ another wave from me and some thoughts and prayers for you all. Goodnight and may you sleep well and awaken refreshed.

izzyizin Sun 22-Jul-12 12:09:39

Made sweeter by weeks of grey and dismal skies it's a gloriously sunny day here in London and I must admit to feeling distinctly envious of widow meandering along country waterways by narrowboat.

I sincerely hope her dongle doesn't fall overboard and that she's taken 'The Wind in the Willows' with her - and also that her LN is persuaded to partake of delicacies such as toad-in-the-hole on their voyage

I'll be messing about on boats in a week or so but, in the meantime, here's a thought for today:

'When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves'.

foolonthehill Sun 22-Jul-12 21:02:09

Love that one Izzy...might make it my mantra for the week.

JandJ I imagine that tonight might be a little difficult as you should have been preparing for the op and now you are living with more uncertainty (unless the dear NHS has come up trumps).

Thinking of you.

JackieandJudy Sun 22-Jul-12 21:03:35

Hello all, good to find you all here. Had to go away unexpectedly yesterday as my Df, who lives couple of hundred miles away, had a fall, so apologies for not checking in sooner.

I don't know what to say sadwidow, I am speechless with admiration, honestly I am. How you coped with what you did, in the way you did, is just amazing. It's all very well saying you coped because you had to, but so many people sink not swim. You not only swam, you swam to olympic standard (topical if nothing else!). Have a wonderful time on the barge with your LN (little nephew?) and don't fuss with your dongle too much! Just enjoy some relaxing time away, hopefully in the sun. And I hope I haven't stirred up too many unhappy memories for you, maybe just some happy ones about what was obviously the exceptional relationship you and your Dh had.

I know what you mean about the other person getting their head around things much better. Dh says that it must be harder for me than him, as he has no choice and just has to get on with it. He's very pragmatic about it all and I daresay if it wasn't for his bravery, I would have become more of a quivering wreck years ago! Skyeblue, I don't know what your situation is, but just going from what you have said upthread, it sounds like you, too, have had a shit time. I hope things get better for you.

To the rest of you who have offered kindness and care, thank you again. I'm hoping that tomorrow, or perhaps Tuesday, we will hear when the op has been re-scheduled for, and please let it be for next Monday. I will keep you posted. Izzy, your thoughts for the day are lovely, when I have a chance I'm going to write them all down somewhere and put them on the fridge!

Have a good week everyone, and keep safe and healthy.

JackieandJudy Sun 22-Jul-12 21:05:28

fool, I did have a little wobble earlier, you're right, but fine now, thank you.

lazarusb Mon 23-Jul-12 10:28:38

Hi, hope you are ok today and hear some news. In the meantime I hope you and yours can enjoy the sunshine a bit. You sound like a lovely person smile

izzyizin Mon 23-Jul-12 12:14:31

I hope that your df has recovered well from his fall, JandJ, and that you receive welcome news with regard to another date for your dh's op.

As the logistics of scheduling a planned op are not rocket science, I sincerely hope you won't settle for anything less than a date that is inscribed on tablets of stone.

Today's thought may be somewhat disconcerting for some, but I find it oddly reassuring as it seems to me that it exhorts us to carpe diem.

'Uncertainty is the only certainty there is and knowing how to live with insecurity is the only security'.

lazarusb Mon 23-Jul-12 18:11:29

Actually Izzy, that makes perfect sense to me. I had a breakdown in the late 90s and suddenly trying to control everything became very important to me. That made life almost impossible, not only for me but also family and friends. Letting go of that was scary but the best thing I have ever done.

foolonthehill Mon 23-Jul-12 18:59:06

By nature I am a planner but I have found that life cannot be planned and, whilst I still make an effort at order, plans are there to be challenged, ditched, uprooted or turned over...usually sadly by someone else at present but perhaps one day for nicer reasons by me!!!

may you have enough certainty in your life to feel able to stand within it and enough uncertainty not to take it for granted.

JackieandJudy Mon 23-Jul-12 21:31:59

Evening all, hope you've all had the weather we've had (although, in all honesty, I don't actually like it this hot blush). Df fine izzy, more shocked than anything else, thankfully.

Thank you for your nice remarks lazarusb, sounds like you've had your own demons to fight in the past, and I hope your life is on an even keel now. Today's thought for the day is another good one, it's kind of "roll with the punches" I think, only put much better! You get to a stage in life when you realise that, actually, that's about all you can realistically do, there's not one of us who can control/plan/forsee the future. When Dh and I first met, he was already like that - I have learnt so much from him over the years (and naturally he would say the same about me --if I nudged him hard enough--).

No news re a re-scheduled date today. Fingers crossed we will hear something tomorrow. Spoke to my dm earlier, who told me that she and dh had had a chat yesterday, and he had told her that I was very unsettled. Didn't realise it showed so much, but I can't deny that he speaks the truth.

skyebluesapphire Mon 23-Jul-12 22:23:57

Fingers crossed that you hear tomorrow then. xx

I heard it was hot today, Ive been stuck in a clients office all day sad

foolonthehill Tue 24-Jul-12 00:11:50

sleep tight JandJ

izzyizin Tue 24-Jul-12 01:04:35

I've been thinking about yesterday's thought and about your response, fool.

When I was young I was fearless. Consequently, it maybe took me longer than most to come to any realisation about what 'feel the fear and do it anyway' means.

I thought it was akin to having courage before performing a high dive or some such, but now I think it's about having the nerve (or should that be verve) to go into free fall and expect an invisible safety to catch you before you hit the ground.

Landing on the moon may have been one small step for mankind, but it takes one quantum leap of faith for us to become all that we can be.

izzyizin Tue 24-Jul-12 02:41:19

Just a quick bump in the hope that some of the heavy traffic on this board in these early hours may be diverted and will add their thoughts to the small powerhouse that is rooting for JandJ and her dh.

foolonthehill Tue 24-Jul-12 08:38:09

hi JandJ: thanks to Izzy now have visions of HGVs driving through your thread!!!! Hope the Hopital calls today and that the sun keeps on shining for you.

lazarusb Tue 24-Jul-12 17:41:44

Hi J&J, thank you for your comments too. Things are MUCH better these days. I hope you heard something today about a new date, if not, don't lose heart, I am sure there are lots of medically qualified people fighting your corner too.

Re:your dh mentioning you to your mum - I think that just goes to illustrate how well you know one another and give each other strength. You sound like you have a lovely, loving relationship.

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