Michael is in the hospital again. I’ve lost count of how many times he’s been in the hospital over the last two years. Twice it was for scheduled surgeries relating to his cancer. All the other times have been via the emergency room. The last time was back in December, while the kids were on winter break. Abdominal pain that grew worse and worse, two trips to the emergency room in one day, and finally a CT scan revealed an obstruction, and Michael was admitted and spent a couple days in the hospital while they attempted to clear the obstruction by non-surgical means.
And here we are again. The familiar pain started up late yesterday afternoon, and it became clear pretty quickly that the plans we had for the evening would have to be canceled. The pain grew worse and worse until finally he drove himself to the ER at 2:00 a.m. Kevin had gone to a friend’s for a sleepover, so I couldn’t leave the other kids. That, too – Michael driving himself to the ER, either that or my dropping him off there and coming home – has become routine. At about 7:30 this morning, they did a CT scan and discovered another obstruction, and so now he’s been admitted and they will again attempt to clear the obstruction through non-surgical means. I don’t know how long he will be in the hospital. I imagine a day or two.
And here I sit, stewing in anger. Anger at cancer for doing this to my husband, to my family. Yes, the cancer is gone, but this is one of the many scars it’s left: adhesions from the surgery that removed the cancer. Lest we ever get comfortable and begin to see cancer as a distant nightmare, these things rear their heads to remind us that cancer is never really completely gone. It fucks with you forever. There are physical scars and emotional ones, and they never go away, even if cancer itself is gone forever (and who knows if it is gone forever of just taking a little respite?).
I’m angry at Michael’s family for failing so utterly in their capacity to put aside their own selfish feelings and agendas and really be there for us during what has been such a horrific crisis over the last two+ years. There, I said it. I’ve never touched directly on the situation with his family publicly, but I’m tired of being respectfully quiet about it, of taking the high road. They don’t even know what we’ve gone through – yes, WE – because a wall has been constructed as a means of self-preservation for our family. I’ve been here! I’ve experienced all the horrors of cancer and the aftermath – as well as ten years’ worth of other marital ups and downs – alongside Michael. I’ve shown my devotion, my trueness, but I am dismissed as someone “evil,” someone who has “brainwashed” Michael. I am angry, so angry, that we’ve had to go through this alone, without appropriate support, because the people who should be here for us cannot see beyond themselves.
I’m angry at all the people who throw around prayer requests like candy on Facebook and everywhere else, who believe there is some merciful god out there who takes a personal interest in anyone’s life. Really? REALLY??? Come on, people!
My kids are upset that Daddy is gone again. They are beginning to get used to these incidents. I know that I am supposed to be strong and stoic through this, but I’m having a really difficult time grasping any strong or stoic part of myself. I’m tired, and so angry.