Role Reversal…#MondayBlogs

Those of you who have followed my blog for some time now know that my sweet darling, Lara, was caregiver extraordinaire during my battle with breast cancer. Enough so that she was dubbed the Tumour Raider, because, hey – the shoe fit!

Well, flu season is upon us. Lara was knocked down first, then Maddie, then me…Moses held on until Maddie and I were well, then he went down for two days. Two – seriously! I wish I could be 11 again and recover from something that quickly.

But Lara…the flu had her down, and while she was down, some infection crept in. First, the sinuses, then, the lymph nodes in her neck.

She hasn’t slept through the night in over a week. It’s amazing what you learn about someone when you’re neither of you sleeping. It seems to me we did this before, during chemotherapy. One 2 a.m. awakening every single night. This is a 10 p.m., a 2 a.m., a 4 a.m. through nearly 6 a.m., then up and out of bed at 6 a.m. It’s been “interesting,” in that Chinese curse kind of way.

Lara is a remarkable woman, and amazing with sick people. It’s not just me: she’s the favorite for all cancer patients. But when it comes to being the patient? Whoaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. Run. Just run.

We’ve been trying to come up with a catchy slogan. The Impatient Patient. That’s as far as we’ve gotten. We try to find humor in it nonetheless, such as the moment she ran from me when I had medicine from her doctor that she didn’t like. Spoiler alert: she was hiding behind the bed.

Today, I fully understand why she always told me I was such a great patient and she would never be able to be as nice or as cheerful as I was. Regardless, I’m sending a late thank you card to my sister-in-law, because she flew down here for every round of chemo and took a month off for one of my surgeries. We laughed so much, I don’t think I realized how hard it is just to watch someone being sick.

Lara IS on the mend. Although, half of her neck is swollen still. Today, she was able to sit up without help. And her fever dropped. We always promised to take care of each other, and I realize just how fortunate we are to have that together. Sometimes people run away from illness, or lack empathy.

So, between you and I, I have my fingers crossed for uninterrupted sleep tonight. I don’t know if she’s there yet, but hope does spring eternal!

Stay well, drink your green tea, and blessings to you all.

7 thoughts on “Role Reversal…#MondayBlogs

  1. So much sweetness, Caroline. It reminds me of the two years when I took care of my husband who had incurable cancer. He was the sweetest of patients and, since he actively decided that kindness would be his spiritual practice since he couldn’t study and meditate as he had in the past, I wasn’t the only one who thought he was sweet. We talked about what would happen when I got sick and needed the kind of support I gave him. There were no answers to those questions. No one can support us and put up with us the way a partner can–except maybe a mom. I know the cost of giving that support and the power of giving and receiving it. I’m glad you and Lara can give that to each other–and I hope you both got a good night’s sleep. (I just visited your FB author page. It’s nice to be connected.)

    • Thank you for sharing your experiences, Elaine. I am so sorry for your loss. I love that your husband chose kindness as his practice. 🙂 In the initial stages, I chose mockery (of the cancer) and finally rediscovered my humor. I feel we are fortunate, Lara and I, to be able to care for each other. We are still trying to find that one night of uninterrupted sleep here. Thank you for joining me on Facebook as well! 😉

  2. So sorry, we had a nasty flu going up here in Canada, honestly worst one I’ve ever had. Wishing you a speedy recovery!

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