Saturday, September 25, 2010

So because I've been lying around in bed recovering from being sick, I've had time to think. I'm starting to think that having time to think isn't such a great thing, actually. It gives the opportunity to think about things you'd rather not think about. I like denial as a life strategy (except in other people, then it's just annoying).

What I've been thinking about is fairness and hospital and the kind of life you'd choose to live if you could and privilege and luck. The kid is feeling righteously pissed of at the moment because his illness means he won't be going to Vietnam (and I have been feeling a bit begrudging about that too I must say). And then he has been teary at the unfairness of it all and why why why and so on. And this morning we were thinking about that (while having coffee at the Fyshwick Markets - I recommend the cheap bakery) and I was thinking about how lucky we actually are, because here we are with clean water and healthcare and abundant food and leisure time and I have a job that both gives me generous leave and lets me use it and here we all are together.

Then, of course, I started giving the kid a lecture on why the healthcare system in the United States is really, really unfair, but the husband stopped me before I made him cry, so that was good. And then we bought the vegetables.

Other things I have been thinking about is this whole hospital thing (in the context of realising how bloody amazing the care available to the kid is and so on). It is a very strange thing to sit there and let all kinds of people do all kinds of painful things to the kid. He is strongly of the opinion that the cure is worse than the disease. Except for the bit with the painkillers when he was in lots of pain. He approved of that bit.

This last time in hospital has opened up all kinds of opportunities for reflection, because there were no life-threatening moments this time. The doctors all took the kid's health very seriously*, they were very assertive in treating his rhabdomyolysis and they were also very responsive to his personality and his anxieties. So in one way it's incredibly reassuring - we can go through this kind of experience without it having to be as frightening and hideous as the first time and we won't be left on our own panicking. It also helps having things happen in your own language, of course.

On the other hand it's very daunting, because it means that people who really know stuff (unlike us who operate on a mixture of second-hand knowledge and fear) were really, really worried as well. I would prefer over-care than under-care but O, it's not a good feeling knowing that the kid might need it one day and we'll never know when (fingers crossed for never, ever again, of course).

Now the kid is pretty much back to normal, or would be if he would blow his nose a time or two and clear the snot out. Urk. He's still slightly more tired than normal, but is getting around and running again and all that good stuff.

I don't have an ending, because that's how it feels. It just runs on into life.

*As evidenced by the air ambulance flight to Sydney, and the expression on the face of the neurologist and the fact that an intensive care team was waiting for us in Emergency, just in case. Blessed be them, and thankful unto infinity that we didn't need them.


Roger Parkinson said...

"On the other hand it's very daunting, because it means that people who really know stuff (unlike us who operate on a mixture of second-hand knowledge and fear) were really, really worried as well."

I like this sentence a lot. It is always good to hear of people doing a damn fine job, even if you wish they didn't have to do anything. But I wondered if it was that they were really, really worried or really, really careful. It can look like the same thing but it isn't.

I hope it was careful rather than worried.

mimbles said...

I really can't quite imagine what this was like, and I'm deeply grateful for that. You and the kid are both pretty amazing, you know that don't you? *hugs*

pi said...

I recently read a report about how stay at home mothers had the highest level of anxiety about things like car crashes, earthquakes etc.

I'm sure it is because of all that time to think. And not seeing enough other people.

Here's to good health.

ThirdCat said...

oh, pen. Hugs. Deep ones.

And yes, it's tricky that time to think thing. Definitely a good thing, but I had a whole year last year pretty much dedicated to thinking. I thought it was just the thing I needed, but turns out it was the worst thing that could have happened to me. Tell me if you think you're thinking too much...I have strategies!

Love to you all.

Penthe said...

Yes, Roger, right and also very comforting. I will keep the notion of careful rather than worried in the front of my mind.

Mim, thanks. The kid is amazing, but generally it's just something that has to be done because it has to be done.

Third Cat - once I get back to work it'll be all thinking about work again, so I won't need any strategies.