Thursday, January 28, 2010

Today is Tough (Jan. 28)

Disclaimer: just to remind anyone reading, this blog is for my own benefit, my own release. I choose to publish it in case it may help friends or strangers in whatever they are going through, and to open discussion to anyone who chooses to speak about what I write about. There is nothing graphic in these pages, but for those with good imaginations, or anyone who works in the medical field, you may not want to read the last paragraph or so, as I very briefly discuss my personal reaction to the resuscitation efforts that were made on my friend.

Today just isn't getting any easier. On top of my very insistent grief pushing itself out of me, I also have a headache and an incredibly sore throat. My doctor upped my antidepressants, as a precaution, which I truly appreciate, and will adhere to, but I sure hate that taking chemicals is part of how I have to deal with hard times in my life. My almost 11 year old is not at all motivated to catch up on his math, even though we finally finished fractions and are moving onto geometry. My 8 and 5 year olds are insistent upon making as much noise as possible. And I can't figure out for the life of me how to get the dishes to take care of themselves. :) Laundry is going, with new detergent, because we've figured out Tyler is allergic to the detergent we'd been using...ALL is not good for us, causes major hives. On top of all this, something about the grieving is getting me very in touch with all of the anger that I have bottled up over time..and if you know me, you know that I don't seem to bottle too much up, but apparently, there's a lot in me that doesn't come out! I am still so mad at the nurse for insisting I leave the room when she brought the team in to resuscitate Serenity. I was really rude to that nurse, wouldn't let her hug me or comfort me after the fact, but mostly because if I hugged anyone, I knew I would fall apart! Plus, she kept going on and on about how she'd had cancer, had a double mastectomy, and didn't even really get sick; she was telling ME how guilty she felt working with dying patients on a cancer ward, never having had to go through anything more than some surgery and radiation. WHAT? Why would anyone do that? I was a distraught, barely held together bundle of hot nerves and she's looking for expiation from me?? One of my best friends in the whole world was in a room fighting to breathe and this nurse wants to go to confession with me? Nurse, you need to get a therapist and get off the cancer ward until you can deal with your stuff! Phew, I've been wanting to get that out! I actually went back to the hospital on the last day I was in Columbia, to apologize to that nurse for having been so angry with her; she wasn't there. I wish I hadn't had any issue with her, but I also just don't understand why she felt the need to confide these things in me. And to get right down to the heart of the matter, the real thing that I am so incredibly mad at myself for right now is actually letting Serenity go. I went in to be so strong, to be the one that could handle it, and I know it was needed, but now, after the fact, almost 2 weeks later, I want to just curl up and hide somewhere for being that person; why was I compelled to go there? Why was I compelled to reassure her that we'd all be OK with things, that we'd grieve, but in time, we would all be OK? I am NOT OK. And why, of all people, did I choose to be the one to call her husband and closest friends and family with the news that "she's gone"? Why? I don't know how I would have handled hearing someone elses voice tell me she'd gone; I was with her when her soul left her, before they ever came to resuscitate, before the dramatic hospital ending. I know she's at peace, I know she was truly happy to leave that beautiful, but cancer-ridden body. I KNOW that. The last thing that I've been so angry about is having been witness to the resuscitation efforts. I chose to be there, to listen to my intuition telling me not to leave her side; and I have no choice but to forgive myself for not listening when I was told to leave the room; I know now that no lay person could have been prepared to see those efforts in action. It is not like it is on t.v., which is the only experience I'd ever had with death and dying. I also know now that those truly were her wishes; she wanted to have every chance possible of kicking that cancer's ugly ass. She fought with every ounce she had in her, til the very last hour. :) I have learned and grown so much from having been through this experience, so many good things have come from it, but the very quickest thing I learned was that I truly need to practice listening and Doing what I am told by those that probably know better than me. 'Cause when they tell you to the leave the hospital room, believe you me, they are not just being polite. That's all for now.


Jenny said...

I'm so, so sorry Tracee.

Hannah said...

Trace, I didn't realize you had been right there at the end, and all by yourself, too! It sounds so traumatic, and it's not at all surprising that you're taking a while to process it all and still feel so much pain.
Right now, I am praying for you. Someone just reminded me last night that we walk, not run, through the valley of the shadow of death. It takes time. It's a slow process. But He can be your Shepherd through that whole dark valley.
Love to you.

Tracee said...

thanks hannah and jenny. i wasn't actually by myself, her mom was in the room with me.