Saturday, July 07, 2007

Hospital Beds

Perhaps naively, I really didn't expect that playing surgery support to Aunty C yesterday would be so emotionally exhausting. After all, it was relatively minor surgery (removing tissue and some lymph nodes) and I'm quite familiar and comfortable in hospitals after spending so much time in my formative years hanging about neuro wards and cafeterias. The smell of linoleum and disinfectant and the squeak of nurse's shoes down the corridor are strangely comforting things to me. But after spending 8:45am to 7:30pm assisting her to the hospital, getting her shot up with dye and into theatre, waiting around for hours fielding calls from loved ones and taking her mum for walks and generally being reassuring, finding her stuff and setting it up in her room, fetching nurses and ice and water and much more besides I walked out of there feeling so... sad? Drained? Weak? Burst into tears at my ex on the phone, and then tried to get it together enough to go to all the parties I had on that night. Made it to them, but I wasn't too bright and bouncy so basically said my hellos and happy birthdays and ran off into the night. As another friend said, its at the stage that we are so busy supporting our friends and trying to keep it together that socialising is just another form of work sometimes, the need to turn up and be shiny and smile and make small talk just to make sure the community doesn't fall apart.

A friend who's husband died last year was saying that one of the times she has missed him the most was when our other friend died and she didn't have him around to talk to and cry with about it. I am really missing having a partner right now, someone to give me a cuddle and make me a cuppa when I get back from a hard day of grieving and counselling and supporting. I have many beautiful and amazing friends to help me through, but its when I get home and am alone that it hits. I know I will get through it, just that sitting here in my lounge room with a headcold and my porridge I'm wondering how the heck I am going to find the energy and willpower to get out of the door and back to the hospital and on to the wake and...

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