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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

foolonthehill Thu 19-Jul-12 13:27:09

no...not abroad...suffering the endless rain like the rest of the fact where I live we are in danger of becoming a small island in the North Sea!

hope you are ok just now.

loopylou6 Thu 19-Jul-12 13:44:44

Hi j&j, just wanted to add my hand of support and to send strength to you all x

izzyizin Thu 19-Jul-12 13:48:32

Apropos of a recent thread on AIBU where the OP stated that she could 'only use her own toilet' hmm any lack of lavatorial capacity, so to speak, to dispose of used or unused toilet paper appears to be peculiar to the Greek islands.

It is to be hoped that this clarification will prevent anyone jetting off to other destinations in and around the Med paying excess baggage to transport their own bin smile

It's also to be hoped that this subject won't give rise to any debate of the notable absence of a toilet bowl in some French loos... grin

foolonthehill Thu 19-Jul-12 19:26:09

um...any one else confused???

JackieandJudy Thu 19-Jul-12 20:06:03

Hi lovely people, this thread has become one of the most important parts of my day - is that strange? In such a short time I've come to really look forward to seeing what you all have to say, and taking comfort from the kindness of strangers. izzy, your lavatorial post made me laugh - I seem to have missed that thread on aibu so I'll try and hunt that down later.

Not such a good day today in J&J land I'm afraid sad. Hospital rang this morning to say that they have to postpone the operation due to lots of emergencies. The two surgeons who are planning to operate on dh only work together on Mondays, so I'm guessing there will be at least a week's delay, if not more. Dh's renal team are not happy so I don't know if they will be able to do anything - if there are no beds, there are no beds would be my guess.

Dh is truly amazing - he has been ill since his early twenties (mid forties now) but is one of the few people I know who does truly count his blessings. He had to retire due to ill health about four years ago, but had always wanted to become a barrister. Once he'd retired, he found himself too ill to take on a physically demanding job, but not ill enough to give up and give in. So he decided to go for his long held dream and now has a place at bar school in September (have I outed myself now?!) He is so desperate to survive (obviously) so he can get on and do something he now wishes he'd done twenty years ago. I often wish that it was me, not him, who was ill -he is a much better person than I am and has so much more to offer up, life seems so unfair sometimes. But if when he pulls through, he's going to need time to recuperate so the delay has really been a tough blow for him. Still, perhaps the situation re beds will change tomorrow or over the weekend.

One of the good thing that happened today (at least, I think it was good - it did provoke a lot of tears!) was that Dh got a letter from my Mum this morning, telling him how much she loved him and how proud of him she was and how she couldn't have wished for someone better for her daughter. They've always been fans of each other, those two, but it was still very touching to see it in writing.

I think I need to do bedtime now, I can hear steadily increasing shouting - so thanks again, and I hope all is well in your worlds! smile

JackieandJudy Thu 19-Jul-12 20:07:05

Just thinking that I've made dh sound too good to be true! He can be a bloody pain in the arse at times as well smile

lazarusb Thu 19-Jul-12 20:19:05

Hello J&J. You sound amazing, all of you. I have just finished the first year of a Law degree and I know it's bloody hard work. Your dh should be very proud of his achievements, I don't know that I could have summoned up the courage to carry on if I was in his situation.

I'm sorry to hear about the postponement of the op, it must be scary as well as frustrating. I hope the hospital can sort something out for him soon. I think your Mum was lovely for writing that letter. A lot of us avoid the opportunity to say something nice when we can, I'm glad she did smile (I hope that doesn't sound miserable - it wasn't meant to!).

sadwidow28 Thu 19-Jul-12 20:33:45

Hi JandJ, Thanks for the update. You can't do much about the bed situation but perhaps the renal team can pull some strings. Don't worry about it - just accept that it has happened. And I wonder if you can take heart from the fact that your DH is not one of the 'emergencies'.

What a wonderful thing for your DM to do. My parents always got on well with my DH (and vice versa) but I remember welling up with tears when my Dad turned to me one day and said, "I really, really like [DH]. He is one of the great guys! You couldn't have picked anyone better." I don't know what made him actually say it when he did ..... it just sort of came out of the blue.

Oh yes, and my DH could be a pain at times also - but I reckon some of us are just so fortunate to have made the right choices.

I hope you are still managing to do ONE SPECIAL thing each day. The bad news is...... you have to think of 7 more special things now that you have the delay.

We are all loving Izzy's thought for the day on your thread. I know she writes them for you, but there are a few of us taking note of them as well.

Have a good evening JandJ. I'll check in again before I go to bed to make sure you don't need any special hand-holding in the small wee hours of the morning.

izzyizin Thu 19-Jul-12 21:50:28

Busy general hospitals always have lots of emergencies and it is to be hoped that your dh's surgeons throw their toys out of the pram are able to insist that his op is accorded the necessary status to go ahead as planned.

It seems to me that this setback calls for a thought for the night which is:

'When the world pushes you to your knees, you are in a perfect position to pray'.

I'm sure I won't be the only one praying that tomorrow brings you more welcome news than that which you received today.

izzyizin Thu 19-Jul-12 22:01:08

By my last reckoning I haven't taken leave of my senses yet fool, and can only hope that my somewhat dilatory response to JandJ's post of Tue 17-Jul-12 21:38:31 isn't the cause of any confused you've experienced upthread smile

izzyizin Thu 19-Jul-12 22:35:22

Here we go, JandJ, enjoy! smile

While on the subject of nowt so queer as folk, there was another AIBU thread earlier this month which, as I recall, was enticingly entitled 'Loud pooing in public toilets' or some such wording.

And there was the thread a month or more back where the OP was of a mind to dispense with toilet paper in favour of cloths... shock

With those under your belt, you should easily be able to outdo your ds2 next time you dine out grin

foolonthehill Thu 19-Jul-12 23:27:40

you have the better of me there Izzy, my senses have been much overstretched and clearly my funny bone has become dislocated in the process!

Also revealing my lack of breadth on the MN boards.

And so dear souls to bed, with a prayer for better news in the morning, a plea for the beloved NHS to be allocated enough resources to serve both the emergency and the long term needs and the hope that some overnight bed manager can wave a few magic wands to provide the necessary in time.

best wishes JandJ and to you all.

sadwidow28 Fri 20-Jul-12 01:40:48

Just checking in to see if JandJ is doing okay before I go to bed in an hour.

What on earth is Izzy talking about? So much potty talk on this thread. blush

Behave! smile

I am okay with the 'if life brings you to your knees.... perfect stance for praying! Gosh, I am always praying! (An overthrow from lots and lots and lots of years being educated by Catholic nuns!) I don't mean to dismiss the power of prayer .... I do still pray which is now my own personal choice.

izzyizin Fri 20-Jul-12 02:17:30

See JandJ's post of Tue 17-Jul-12 21:38:31 on page 2, widow, and please note that I'm not usually given to toilet humour unless it's sanitary fit for the dinner table smile

Fwiw, I don't pray to a deity as such and what I term 'prayer' is my attempt to commune with what I consider to be All That Is in the belief that, if there is a god who made wo/man in her/his image, we are touched with the divine and are all connected at some level, as posited by Jung's theory of a collective unconscious that plays some role in manifesting our serendipitous encounters/moments.

Faith may move mountains, but the power of thought can create, move, and demolish, mountain ranges in our minds in an instant. That's not a thought for the day, btw, it's merely one of my ramblings musings grin

sadwidow28 Fri 20-Jul-12 03:40:45

Okay Izzy, I read that post twice and I have no answer smile

I am just checking in to see if JandJ is okay over-night. I think all in the JandJ household is as good as can be expected and she is getting some sleep.

You may have gathered from another thread that I get my LN tomorrow for 9 days. I am taking him on a week's holiday on a narrowboat. But how on earth do you feed a child 9 days' of healthy meals when he only has a repetoire of 8 things he likes? I was only supposed to have him for 3 days this time, but SIL is really at the end of her tether!

How many times do we advise posters to seek RL support.... so I have stepped up to the plate and said I will have LN for 6 extra days so that SIL (a widowed single Mum) can re-focus on herself. LN is an intelligent 12 yo boy who has been so empowered by his counselling sessions that he is difficult to live with at the moment.

I might have to have my own thread on never know! Seriously - we'll be fine!

I'll tootle to my bed now and catch up with you all tomorrow.

JandJ - Take care.

foolonthehill Fri 20-Jul-12 08:34:49

SWpretend that you have forgotten what he experience of the children i look after (not mine) is that they will surprise you by eating all sorts of things that appear on the table if they are away from home, with someone else and hungry!!

JandJ all good thoughts to you for this day

now I'm off to relocate my funny bone and will be back later on.

izzyizin Fri 20-Jul-12 11:11:40

There can only be one thought for today:

'Pressure makes diamonds'

sadwidow28 Fri 20-Jul-12 12:20:41

Ooooh - I am loving that thought Izzy.

AltruisticEnigma Fri 20-Jul-12 12:53:51

Aww your poor DH, OP.

I hope everything goes OK. Keep positive and always here to talk.

loopylou6 Fri 20-Jul-12 14:12:19

How you both doing today j&j? smile

sadwidow28 Fri 20-Jul-12 19:17:23

Just giving the thread a little bump so that JandJ can find it this evening.

I hope you have had a good day today JandJ. Did you do a special thing?

ajandjjmum Fri 20-Jul-12 19:25:35

Just seen this thread J & J. Hope you and your family have a happy weekend together - and get to enjoy some sunshine. smile

JackieandJudy Fri 20-Jul-12 21:35:07

Evening all, so nice to find you here - and thanks to newcomers for support and kind words too. Thanks for the toilet themed links izzy, will read shortly! sadwidow - forgive me if I'm presuming too much or opening up a painful topic for you, but when/how did you lose your dh? I'm trying to push all those sorts of thoughts out as soon as they rear their ugly heads, but I did have a major panic in the middle of the night last night. If ds3 hadn't somehow appeared in my bed, I think I would have jumped out and run to my lovely thread! All ok in bright light of day though.

Nothing much to report today other than Monday seems to be definitely off. I can't imagine anything much will happen tomorrow, hospitals seem to be all but shut down at the weekends. But dh has been the emergency many times himself, so I'm not complaining too much that we now have to concede to someone whose need is greater. But I do really hope the op can go ahead the following Monday or else I may have no nails left, and that will be the least of my worries!

I must say that we have had such great value from the NHS, and have met some incredible people who'se dedication and empathy defies belief. Lots of bad things have happened to us, but so have lots of wonderful things too, which totally re-confirm your faith in human nature! (However, if you were the nasty man in the post office collection office today please note, I do not currently include you in the good camp!)

Here's hoping everyone has a great Saturday.

sadwidow28 Fri 20-Jul-12 23:48:00

I don't mind you asking at all JandJ but I have been so careful not to use the words 'terminally ill' so as not to frighten you. I guess the username gave it away .... duh (slaps self round the head!)

You will soon realise why I am sitting on this thread holding your hand and trying to tell you what I did to get through each day.

I lost my DH 11 years ago when I was 46 years old. He was a teacher, I worked nationally. When I came home from working away one Friday, he told me that when he walked up the stairs earlier, he had to sit down at the top to rest. He felt severe back pain. So off to the Chiropractor we went and he felt some relief. 2 days later, he couldn't walk far again..... so back to the chiropractor we went again. This time, the CP looked at me and said "I don't think this is skeletal".

Anyway, I took him to the GP and he was sent to hospital that day (28th May). He was first diagnosed with Guillain–Barré syndrome which was worrying in itself but had a good prognosis long-term. Two weeks later, after a lot of jumping up and down from me, I got the hospital to do an MRI scan. He had Stage 4 Lung Cancer and nothing could be done. He had 2-4 weeks to live.

So we cried together, looked at 'the end' and got our affairs in order. Once we knew that we had talked about and sorted everything ..... we got on with living every day at a time. We decided that if we kept focussing on 'the end' then we would lose TODAY.

So we had him sent home from hospital and we dealt with DH's illness OUR WAY. In between the bed baths, the oxygen, the insulin injections and his morphine, every day had a 'special outing' and a 'special meal' in it. I would dress DH and hoist him into his wheelchair and off we jolly well went! He would tell me where he would like to go - what he wanted to see one last time. I even hired a van and persuaded 4 burly men to lift him in his wheelchair into the back so that he could visit his favourite pub one last time.

We laughed, we joked, we hugged and cuddled. After I had wiped his bum, or given him his meal, or sorted out his 15 pillows, I would always say "I love you. Do you love me too?" His wry smile would cross his face as he said, "No.... I love you three". You see, every day was a blessing. It was one more day that we got to spend together.

And, we got more than our 2-4 weeks. He lived until 19th August. He died gently in my arms and his last words were, "I love you three".

Now I hope that hasn't upset you. It really was the 'focusing on each day that got us through'. I hardly remember the 24/7 nursing care I did. I just remember the chats we had as I pushed him along, and his smiley face when I gave him one of his special home-cooked meals. I remember how he would grab my hand as I walked past his bed; or he would stroke my hair as I was changing his oxygen cylinder.

The sorrow I have today is because I had so much joy yesterday.

JackieandJudy Fri 20-Jul-12 23:59:46

sadwidow, thank you so much for sharing that. I do have tears in my eyes, yes, but they're tears of admiration at the way you coped, of sadness that you lost someone with whom you shared what sounds like a very special relationship, and tears of awe at your, and your dh's, bravery. You both sound like amazing people, who know/knew what the important things in life were/are. I'm glad you had that love, and I'm sorry it ended in the way it did. And thank you once again for sharing your hard found wisdom and sad experiences with me.

I do try to focus on each day, so does dh (more so than me because he's better at seeing the bigger picture), but I'll try even harder now having read your post. xx

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