Marriage Log, Day 6,205…..
Today is our 17th wedding anniversary. Many couples our age have been married twice that long, but this is a second chance at love for both of us.
I got up at daybreak use the bathroom and my husband, a.k.a Superman, is lying on his stomach on a twin-size mattress that is clearly too small for his man-size frame. He is sprawled out and it looks as though he exhaled and then just melted into that spot. I know he is exhausted…
I am 9 days post ACDF surgery in which I had a cervical disc removed and then fused. My activity has been very limited and he has been there to care for me every step of the way. He chose to sleep on the floor next to me so he could hear me and tend to my every need. He didn’t want to disturb me by sleeping in our bed.
The first day home he got me cleaned up from the blood, goop and sticky stuff all over me. This included showering me and washing my hair, then using baby oil to wipe away the sticky patches. He put lotion on me, dressed me and carefully got me situated in our deluxe king size adjustable bed. He tucked pillows, blankets and raised my feet. With super-human strength, he placed thigh-high compression stockings on my legs. No easy feat, I assure you! He continued to monitor my elevated blood pressure due to my body’s response to pain.
He organized my medication regimen and set his phone every two hours to check on me. I had water, ginger ale with bendy-straws along applesauce at the ready to take my pills. He alternated ice packs and sometimes heat depending on my needs. For two days he didn’t allow me to walk unassisted.
The second evening home, he was in the garage with our son and he didn’t hear me calling for him. My daughter came to my rescue and I told her I needed Daddy. When he came in, I needed to used the bathroom and was terribly uncomfortable. I took this opportunity to spew some fiery darts of unkind words at him, but he didn’t even flinch. He stood me up and walked me to the bathroom and asked if there was anything I needed or that he could do to help me. He then helped me back to bed, held my drink for me and saw to it that I was put comfortably back to bed again. He leaned over to kiss me and asked if that was all I needed from him. I opened my eyes to see his face inches away and he smiled at me. I melted and big tears fell from my eyes. I said how sorry I was for being so mean. He wiped away my tears and told me once again he loved me. I can’t remember what he said next, but it made me laugh! (that is so Eddie!) He smiled at me again and I knew all was forgiven.
Meanwhile, he got the kids out the door every morning for school, arranged their transportation to various activities, did laundry, cooked, cleaned and managed it all. It was odd listening to all this activity from behind my bedroom door. That is where I am usually front and center. I smiled knowing Eddie could handle it- probably better than me!
Before this planned surgery, I tied up a thousand loose ends at work and at home, trying to make things easier on everyone. I trained a woman at work to do my job and arranged my schedule so there wouldn’t be as many commitments. At home, I filled out paperwork, audition forms, trip forms, yearbook forms, doctors’ forms, wrote out checks, paid bills and checked the calendar to be sure I hadn’t forgotten anything before the surgery because I knew I would be unable to help and I didn’t want to forget a thing!
Then, I discovered the one thing I forgot, was our wedding anniversary. Maybe I figured we would go out one night in a month or two, but I didn’t even get him a card or present. How did I miss that?
This year however, I received the greatest anniversary gift a wife could ever imagine. It wasn’t diamond earrings or red roses and chocolates. Eddie showed me how devoted he is to me by how he cared for me. His tenderness, compassion and understanding were felt infinitely. He looked at every detail to see what he could do to help or make things better for me. He’s so resourceful and smart. He was always smiling at me. He called me beautiful when I knew I looked like hell. When my appetite wasn’t good, he made tons of soft foods only to have me turn up my nose at them. Then I mentioned that chicken-n-dumplings from Cracker Barrel sounded good and I had them in front of me within twenty minutes. There isn’t a minute that goes by that I do not feel 100% loved by my sweet Eddie.