Yesterday I had my pain injections. I find these ironically amusing. The reason I get them is to decrease the pain in my back and neck. The typical reaction is so normal that they warn you prior to having them done, temporarily, your pain will be significantly increased. Wonderfully pointless if you ask me.
Naturally, I awoke at about 3 am with silent tears rolling down my cheeks and pain shooting through my body as I laid there devising a plan to rise out of bed without inducing further torture. While I devised, I thought about what I would do when I finally mustered the strength to get on my feet. Write. Instinctively that was the first thought that went through my mind. I even went as far as thinking of what I would write about, what I would say, how I would entrap your souls, I mean uh, encourage you to read on.
Frankly, I am not writing any of it.
Somewhere after making the coffee, between Facebook scrolling, and before logging into WordPress all was lost to me. Honestly, I can assure you it wasn’t that great of a piece I would have managed anyway. How do I know this? Because, if it had been that worthy I wouldn’t have been able to contain my enthusiasm and would have spewed words out onto this screen before the coffee was done brewing.
It’s been a tiring week, but they all have potential to be. I am beginning to finally accept that I am part of the crowd mercifully waiting for 2016 to be over, praying for a better 2017 to greet me. It’s been a tiring year, but they all have potential to be.
The odd thing is, and maybe it is the small piece of my reluctance to admit defeat, but I still have this burning desire to wrap up all the lose ends from this year. The year has been full of, hmm, I don’t even know what to call them. Lessons? Issues? Situations? Horrible tiny demons of destruction attempting to take us down?
Remember back in the beginning of 2016? I was a nutshell of motivation leaping into a bountiful new year. I had dreams and goals and ambitions to alter the ways of the universe. I was also a stay at home mom with two nearly school aged children and lots of free time, more so than I ever realized until it was too late.
A thing or two has changed since then. It all started when my husband first started getting sick around February. As time progressed his illnesses worsened. Before I knew it I was spending more time at the hospital with him than any other one place in my entire week. Of course, as his sick days added up his working days were subtracting. Paychecks were getting smaller, and smaller, and smaller. Until one day the company let him go. Too much time missed. It was a reasonable dismissal, even not knowing what was causing him to become so ill so often.
To be honest, I too was wearing thin on the constant hospital trips. So thin that one day I finally snapped, so to speak. Of course, he was feeling ill. He wanted to go to the hospital. I had so many things I planned on accomplishing that day. House cleaning. A shower. Studying for mid-terms. Another half day spent at the hospital was not written on my to-do list for the day. If nothing else I NEEDED a shower.So I did what I thought would be the best compromise. I dropped him off at the hospital, kept my phone close by, and got my shower.
I took my time that day. I got dressed and did my hair and make-up. I wasn’t stalling, but I certainly wasn’t rushing to sit in a hospital for hours either. Finally I was ready and drove the two minutes to the hospital. I entered his ER room moments before his doctor came in. My husband introduced us and the doctor said, “Oh I’m glad you’re here for this.”
Here for this? For what?!
Directing his conversation to my husband, “It is likely you have cancer. A type of cancer called CML. While I did blood work that highly indicates it we do need to refer you for a bone marrow study to confirm the diagnosis.” In shock, we thanked the doctor and went back home.
A cold, he merely had a cold. That’s what the doctor was supposed to say. For weeks we were numb. Numb until the test that confirmed our greatest fears and reassured us all at the same time, as it could have been far worse. I thank God for that doctor being in the hospital that day. We had went three to four times every week for nearly two months. Finally this single doctor found out what was really wrong. Had it not been for him, my husband would have likely given up, and have never found out until it was too late.
After the bone marrow biopsy confirmed the diagnosis our world started spinning and hasn’t stopped yet. We cried for help and no one heard. Let me tell you, that is one heart breaking feeling. Crushing. My husband had been out of work for two months due to his illness, I hadn’t went to work because I was caring for him and transporting our son to school. We hadn’t had money in a long time. Right in time for the diagnosis came all of our shut off notices. And not a sole reached out to financially help us, even when we had no choice but to throw our selves at their feet in a desperate cry to keep our family afloat.
I ended up having the closest thing I’ve ever witnessed to a nervous breakdown. There was SO much on my shoulders and not a soul to lighten the load. To top off all that was already on my plate they added medication and therapy appointments.
In the end we had to sell our house at ultimate bottom dollar to have the little money we could to move before we had no electric to see, to use the bathroom, to cook. With just enough money to rent a uhaul, leaving not even enough saved for a down payment on a new home, we had to move ourselves and our two children into a shed at my mother in laws house. A large shed. A clean shed. But still, a windowless, dark, shed. We had to pull our son out of school a month early. We had to fight endlessly with truancy officers after I refused to put him into a new school for one month after all he had been through.
It still hurts that I had to beg others for help. It hurts more that they watched us drowning and couldn’t find it in their hearts to throw even the smallest of life preservers our way. People I know. People I loved and respected. Good, loving, Christian people. People who said they’d be there for me always. But no one was there, and my heart hardened a little bit more.
I imagine they sit back now and see that we got our home and assume we are rolling in insurance money from the accident. Little do they know it’s not that simple. We got our home due to the help of one, just ONE, person. We now owe a huge financial burden back to this person, and still have house payments and utility payments to afford, still have a thousand doctor appointments a month to provide transportation to, still struggle, still worry, still try to battle through the fights our health has given us. Just the other day our electric was shut off and we had to borrow even more money to provide something as simple as heat to our own children. That insurance money, it isn’t shit. It is barely what I brought home monthly, without all the expenses that have been added to our budget since the accident.
After the cancer it was one thing after another. A shed. A broken well. An accident. A lost job. Two more babies to be responsible for. An extra room to build. Saving for another vehicle. Appointments enough to drive the sanest crazy. And oh good lord the health problems!!! My brain tries to tell me I’m 32, but my body says it’s pushing 90! I’m sure my husband feels very much the same.
I probably sound like I’m bitching. I am. And I think I have every right to. 2016 has been a horrible, miserable, no good, very bad year!
But, I’ve got to admit… we made it through one hell of a year, and we’re still going strong. Even stronger than before.
We don’t have enough room in our house. We don’t have enough beds to sleep on. We don’t have enough money in the bank, or time in the day. We do have each other though, and that is so much more than some I know.
I wouldn’t take it back. Not one single thing. Had it not been for the cancer we would still be living in the city. We would have never all admitted how much we truly yearned to be back home. If it weren’t for all our struggles, all those who turned their backs on us, and for the few who didn’t, we wouldn’t have learned how truly special others are. How very much they are needed in our lives. We wouldn’t have learned how desperately others may need the little help we can provide them, no matter how good it looks like they have it from the outside.
I didn’t hit my new years goals this year. My life is completely different in nearly every way from that which it was when those goals were set. I did far better though. I grew in ways I could have never listed on a single resolutions list.
For that alone, I am grateful.