We were driving home from a doctor’s appointment, discussing Kim’s upcoming surgery for the return of her cancer, when it suddenly occurred to me: All this medical stuff – the pre-op paperwork, the ultrasounds and PET scans, the surgeries themselves (this will be two within a month), the follow-up – means a serious disruption to my coffee routine. While she is lying there asleep as the doctors, nurses, and technicians are hard at work, I will be stuck in the waiting room with bad coffee and nothing but FOX News on the television. (Adding to my discomfort is the guilt I feel for thinking this!) Yes, there is a Starbucks a few blocks away, and Kim encouraged me to slip out for a cup, but I know better. What if something goes wrong while I am enjoying a cappuccino? That would make me the Bad Guy!
Not only that, but some of these appointments are early in the morning. Today’s surgery, for example, required us to be there at 6 a.m. What this means, other than my missing my Second Breakfast Cup, is that I will also not have time to read the newspaper or check my email! I imagined my laptop emailing its own hard drive to ask itself, “Where’s David?” And the newspaper just sat on the front lawn, sulking and starting to decay. I told my laptop and my newspaper, “It’s not my fault!” I explained that I do this because I love Kim and want to be there for her. But the damage had been done.
Afterwards was no picnic, either. While Kim was lolling about on the couch enjoying her pain pills, I had to look after the housework. That meant fixing my own lunch, plus waiting to serve dinner – the chicken salad that Kim made yesterday in anticipation of my taking over. Fortunately, she did three loads of laundry as part of her pre-op while I was filling the birdbath.
The doctors said that it would be at least two weeks until Kim can lift. I suppose that means I will be helping her with the laundry, as best I can, though last time I helped I put her shoes and a couple of bras in the dryer, and she seemed upset. Whatever work will be added to my regimen will be on top of my regular duties of opening tight jars and reaching things on the high shelves. But Kim is going through a lot, with the cancer and the surgeries and all, so it’s the least I can do to pitch in and be supportive, at least for two weeks. I’ll be able to drink coffee and read the paper while she sleeps off the anesthesia lingering in her system.
A friend told Kim a couple of days ago that when she is sick, she prefers not to have her husband around. I’m not sure why Kim told me that, and I do wonder what’s going on in that marriage!