2 Years Feel Like 20

2 years feel like 20 is where I am when I travel back in time to 2019. Why does it feel like 20? Why? Why? Why?

How can it be this long already?

Just the other day I put a post on “Mourning Thoughts” my new daily thoughts about grief and not just the grief from a husband or wife dying. There are many other reasons people grieve and I wrote about those reasons for a magazine this month that can be found here soon: http://www.brainzmagazine.com/

I am also working on the outline for the next book and most of it has already been written. It will be tedious at first for me to work on because I have to go back through 2 years of morning posts I wrote on Facebook and organize them into a book about strength.

A friend suggested it recently and I smiled because I already had the idea and it will be implemented soon.

2 years. 2 years ago doctors were not being honest with us. They were telling us he was making improvements. They built our hopes up daily until one day they just signed off his case without saying a GD word to me. They walked off and explained nothing. I hated them then, I still hate what they did to this day.

When I talk about moving from Florida to SC I say it was due to all the memories. That is not 100% true. It is also because I couldn’t stand to see TV ads for that hospital. I couldn’t stand to drive past that hospital. I changed doctors because my doctor’s office was across the street from that hospital.

4 years ago a surgical error changed Larry’s heart and his life. I am glad I left Tampa.

My wonderful loving husband’s life was changed and shortened and the surgeon who made the mistake admitted it to me. He whispered it in my ear that he was to blame after he repaired the mistake.

Yes, 2 years feels like 20.

December 11, 1998

Chicago winters are nasty, and there I was sitting at my computer
asking myself did I really accept a date for dinner with
a man I had never met and walk three long blocks, freezing my
fanny off ? What was I thinking?

The truth is a good friend had convinced me to sign up for an
online dating service, and I was down to my last few days of having
free access to it, but free also meant I couldn’t see any photos of the
men there, nor could they see me. This truly was a blind date.
Doing this definitely took courage because either one of us could
have been a dud, and then what? Yes, this took bravery along with a
dose of what the hell was I thinking because it was freezing outside.
I primped. Who doesn’t want to look terrific on a first date?
Then again, who looks for a new relationship during the holidays?

My brain kept telling me that the men on the site were probably
trying to get lucky, I mean why else would they join at the holidays?
It is like admitting they were bums that had gotten tossed out.
Never mind the fact that I also had joined at the holidays.
I had returned to Chicago from living in Costa Rica with a stop in
Detroit to visit friends before coming back to the windy city. On top
of all of this, I was still married, although the divorce was imminent.

I primped some more. I won’t lie, I went for a sexy look with
a mini-skirt and low-cut top, and I added a spritz of “Obsession,”
my signature scent. I walked the three long blocks to the restaurant
he had chosen in low-heeled shoes, still slipping and sliding
along the way.

I walked into the restaurant, and the world stopped spinning
for a minute. There he was, just as he had described, tall with a
beautiful head of silver hair, and a look on his face that told me
he appreciated what he was looking at, and in fact that look told
me he felt as if he had won the lottery. I knew I had already won it.

It was a noisy Friday evening, people were laughing and
talking, but all I could hear was the beat of my heart as I walked
up to this amazingly sexy man. His smile lit up the room, and for
the first time in a long time I was speechless.

We laughed through dinner; we told our stories, and suddenly
the check arrived and all I could think was I had to come up with
something to keep this evening going. I wasn’t ready to say goodnight,
and I had a feeling he felt the same way.

I suggested we take a walk over to Marshall Fields on State
Street to look at the holiday windows without giving a thought
to the fact that my skimpy attire was iffy for windy and blowy
Chicago winter nights.

We were not that far from the restaurant when I realized I
was having a wardrobe malfunction. I was wearing thigh-high
nylon stockings, and they were slipping in the frosty weather.
Undoubtedly this was because my thighs had shrunk from the
cold, and it was all I could do to walk normally while occasionally
trying to hike them back up.

I have always been a bold woman, and what I should have
done was just stop and peel them off. But no, I continued to keep
them where they belonged in the name of keeping this date going
by doing some strange convoluted-looking dance.

Weeks later, when I admitted this to Larry, he laughed so hard
his face turned red, and he came right out and asked why I hadn’t
just peeled them off without missing a beat.

By this time, he had already learned how bold I could be, and the bolder I was, the harder he fell.

Yes, in looking back, that was the magical night when we
both began to heal from our pasts and we both began to become
whole again.

13 Days in Hell

“No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.” C. S. Lewis

13 Days in Hell.

A year ago right now I was on day 9 of 13 meeting with a psychologist and a palliative care doctor after being told that the team of Neurologists caring for Larry had signed off of his care.

Days 1-8 I had been told repetitively that Larry was making improvements daily.

They lied. Now I had fear.

I am not sure why they lied. Since that time I have shown photos of his MRI that showed a bilateral stroke to his basilar artery, which is rarely recoverable and I had been told that this was as serious as it could be.

They lied. They lied for 8 days and gave me fear.

Worse yet, they let an ICU RN tell me they were signing off without having the professional courtesy to discuss their decision with me.

I cannot forgive them, and because I can’t forgive them, I resigned from a committee at the same hospital. It was necessary for my well-being.

No Filter.

Grief steals your filter. I am more honest now than I have been over the past year. I have no patience for petty issues or small talk. I curse more now, and I don’t apologize for it.

Down the road I had several meetings with doctors in this organization, and they assured me that there was a lesson in all of this. Why did Larry have to be the lesson? There is over one lesson to be learned. Can they start with the lies?

I did not receive closure on this until I pushed the envelope further. I pissed them off with my tenacity, but I needed answers and I needed resolution.

My Shock and Trauma

Sudden death is a cause of PTSD. I was already in shock; I had tremendous trauma for 8 days. On day 9 I had a second dose of PTSD when this team walked away from Larry, leaving me to honor his wishes.

Over this past year, I have been in talk therapy and deep therapy for PTSD. It has helped, yet the fear comes rushing back to me when I remember how I felt when I was told they had given up.

They lied and here I am a year later living through 13 days in Hell again.


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