I know you’re waiting to hear Part 2 of Quint’s story, but I have another story to share with you.
Anton got sick this week. Really sick. Monday he was doubled over in pain. By early Tuesday morning he was in the emergency room, by the mid day he was receiving emergency surgery. He had developed a hernia in his small intestine that had ruptured. They thought they could repair it laproscopically, but it didn’t happen. They had to back out and open him up. They removed the “dead” portion of his intestine and re-sected it.
Here were are, it’s Friday. I’m sad to tell you that progress has been excruciatingly slow for him. He cannot tolerate much of anything. We’ve tried to get him up on his feet, walk him around, etc. But it’s a slow process and he is sleeping most of his days. His pain is high and his spirits are low. Every time we move forward a couple steps, something happens to set us back. He had a good day, and the next he spiked a fever and had to be put back on oxygen. He perked up for a bit, but tonight he has fluid on the lungs and can’t breathe well. He is as weak as a kitten and can only handle the smallest interactions. He’s depressed. He’s sad he won’t be able to finish the school year strong. He misses home, his kids, his students, and his dog. He misses fresh air and swimming with his kids. It breaks my heart every time he is lucid enough to share his sadness with me.
For myself, it’s harder than I ever thought it would be. Not because we haven’t had many helping hands carrying us through the week – because we have. Meals have been set up. Friends have come and loved on us. Cards and gifts have been received; such generosity in our time of need. The children have been well cared for, and Anton’s parents made it into town last night.
No, the support is amazing. The hardest thing?
I miss my best friend.
I haven’t had a solid conversation with him since Monday. (read = lucid) I go home each night, and I cry my eyes out (just keepin’ in real folks) because he’s not there. The house doesn’t feel the same. It’s our house, but it’s not home without all of us there. We can’t sit on the couch and talk about our day, we can’t watch our favorite shows, we can’t cuddle up in bed, we can’t kiss each other good-bye in the morning, or send all of our little texts throughout the day. All that’s just gone. For now.
I know he’ll get better. I do. I know he’ll recover in time and we’ll look back on this as a trial that we weathered together. I know this. God is good all the time. We are in loving hands.
But for today?
I cried. And I miss him. And it’s hard to parent my babies alone. They miss him and they don’t understand. When they see him, they are scared and confused – but put on their brave faces and love on him anyway.
Today it’s hard not to hold his hand and get those return squeezes that I so love. For today we’re not deciding what’s for dinner and talking about our week and giving big hugs. For today.
Can I offer you some precious advice? Love your family. We lost a dear friend this week to a diving accident, leaving her husband and two daughters behind. She and J were best friends. Inseparable. Now she’s gone and he’s overcome, understandably, with grief.
Life does turn on a dime, and you never know how things can change day to day.
I’m grateful to God for the skilled hands of the medical team, the excellent care, the beautiful facility AB is recovering in, the friends and family who love on us, the words of encouragement – all of it. Such a blessing day to day.
But for right now?
I miss my best friend.
I miss him so much it hurts…