Another family friend, reeling from a year of crises involving his wife, recently filled his garage with a Hummer. Massive, tires almost as big as I am, this is a monster truck. In an accident, there's no doubt who will emerge the victor.
Two men who love their wives. Two men with some disposable income. Two men whose wives had faced disease and despair last year. Two men doing what they could to protect their spouses.
I've always maintained that it is easier to be the patient than the caregiver. It is much less painful for me to experience an event than to watch another suffer. I never know what to do while I'm standing on the sidelines, pretending to be useful.
Not-Kathy's father was hospitalized over the weekend; I dropped by the hospital this afternoon to visit. Ernie, his wife, was fussing and organizing and making sure that things were done correctly prior to his discharge this afternoon. The monitors beeped and, since she's a nurse and he's a doctor they fiddled and pushed and made the noise stop. Then she sent me to find a floor nurse to insure that they'd done the right things. She's willing to protect her man herself, but she's not shy about asking for back-up.
She left him with instructions to get dressed and call her when the resident had figured out whether aspirin or plavix was the right medication. She'd come right over and take him home, but first she had to get grooceries and take out the dog and pay the guy installing the venetian blinds in the bedroom. She's got it all under control. She's not going out and buying him a car.
I began this post with a theme but no conclusion. I hoped that my 9 fingers would create one themselves as we went along, but it seems it hasn't happened. Is there something about cocooning those we love within the grandest safety net we can construct? Is that why the guys went for stuirdy vehicles and Ernie went to the market, each tending to her own area of expertise or responsibility? I'm not sure. I only know that the three of them are rattling around in my brain, teasing me , the message just out of reach.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Just slide them into the comments below.