Saturday, September 29, 2012

Never Promise an Outcome You Cannot Control

What a day.  I have started this post over and over and have gotten nowhere.  I just don't feel ok today.  I went to a funeral and it hit way too close to home and now I am not ok.  Death is such a hard thing for me but so is living sometimes.  I can't imagine what our lives would be like if Matt had not survived the stroke.  I know it seems redundant to talk about it but it is something that we deal with everyday and sometimes I just have to write it out.  My friend lost her husband very suddenly and I happened upon the scene the morning it happened just after his body had been removed.  I had no idea it had happened and I had an appointment at her house.  I felt horrible when I showed up and realized what had just happened.  I just hugged her and then told her "nothing I say can make this ok.  I'm so sorry."  I wasn't going to try and comfort her because I know first hand that in a situation like that comfort cannot be found.  It isn't until later when the storm has passed that you can find comfort and it often comes in the weirdest places.  I have found personally it hardly ever comes from what people say to you.  People can say the stupidest things when you are grieving.  When Matt had the stroke and people came to the hospital, I appreciated it so much when they didn't try to make sense of what was happening or assure me that God loved us and this happened for a reason.  None of that helps in the beginning.  The truth is that I knew all of that already.  I knew that God was with us that day.  I see the moments where he led and guided us in getting him to the hospital and in making the decisions that had to be made.  I knew that there was a reason that all of it was happening but in that situation I was completely in shock.  I remember while Matt was in surgery the feelings of terror, grief, sadness, comfort, calm and love that all come with something that traumatic. I sat for 7 hours and thought of every possible outcome for the situation that we were in.  I felt the spirit prepare me for the possibility that Matt may not survive.  I told my Dad during those hours that I really wasn't sure if Matt would survive and he told me we weren't going to think about that.  I am grateful that he was strong but in that moment it was impossible not to think about it.  I had just watched Matt begin to die in front of my eyes.  I had watched everything that happened from the first moments of the stroke until they put him in that helicopter and knew that there was a good chance he wouldn't make it.  I asked the doctor in Tooele to be straight with me as they were prepping him for the helicopter ride.  I said out loud, "can he die from this?" and her answer was "there is a chance, yes."  I looked at her and concentrated on breathing in and out as a million things ran through my head.  I stopped them as they were rolling him out of the door and asked if I could have a moment with him.  The paramedic said "yes but quickly."  I leaned over and kissed his face and said "Don't you die.  I love you and don't you dare die."  Then they took him from me.  I got to the University hospital after a 45 minute ride in the car and they took me to the surgery waiting room.  The nurse came and talked to me. She told me what the hospital policies were and that if needed I would have time to say goodbye and that even though they don't usually allow children into the ICU they would let me know if I needed to bring them to say goodbye to their dad. I had promised them that Matt would be ok when they left for school.  They had wanted to go to the hospital with me and I said no and that we would be home before they got back from school.  I learned a valuable lesson that day.  I learned never to promise an outcome that you cannot control.  Everyday since that day I have been surrounded by circumstances that I cannot control and have relived all of it over and over. I'm haunted and it's horrific and I'm sure people are so tired of it.  I'm sure they want me to "get over it" but I don't know how.  I don't know how to curb the fear and the hurt.  I worry every time he forgets what we have just talked about.  I panic every time he gets a headache.  I cry often when he leaves for work.  I have to pull myself out of this at some point but there is that constant fear of another stroke.  I start counseling soon and I know it is something that should have started while Matt was in the hospital but I was too busy being strong for everyone around me, especially him.  I am having trouble being strong now.  My strength is gone and I'm tired.  I am so thankful for the tender mercies that we experience and the time that we have been given. Now I just need to find a way to move forward.

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