I have no idea how many times EACH DAY I ask my husband that question.
But I know it's a lot.
While he's still sleeping (if I think he's breathing funny).
Mark.....are you OK?
Shortly after he gets up.
How are you, Honey?
If he starts yawning a lot or can't finish a sentence which could mean his blood sugar is getting low.
Do you need to eat?
When he grunts, groans or moans.
Are you OK??
I worry about Mark. So much.
It's not as if I don't have ample reason to worry. The fact that his heart stopped 6 times in 2 years is enough. Not to mention diabetes and dialysis.
So you can understand why I might not jump for joy when we get a little bit of good news. I may think "well that's good", but I don't feel all that much relief.
We recently found out that Mark's heart pump function has improved since his arrhythmia trauma last March. At that time it was functioning at only 25%, but now it is up to 45%.
This is good news and I spread it, because I know the people who care about us want to know these updates.
On our family Facebook page:
Which I also shared to my personal page. I then posted on my blog fan page where it got 13 likes and a couple of comments. I tweeted and got a few excited replies.
But do you see above how I merely stated the results? No expressions of excitement, no !!! or :-).
It's because there's just a lot to factor in. Sure, this is a bit of good news, but.....
The thing is, too much has happened. Mark has too many health problems that pose various threats to his stability for me to naively celebrate ONE good test result.
This does nothing to reassure me of how much longer my husband will live. How much longer he can push back against all that is trying its damnedest to shove him to the ground.
Mark is an amazing and inspirational testament to the strength of the human spirit!
So sue me if I can't be excited that his heart pump is stronger.. I have to look at the whole picture. I have to keep my head out of the clouds.
I have to be only cautiously optimistic. It's a coping mechanism.
I fear it may come off as cold and callous. That is the opposite of what I really feel. In fact, I feel so much, that if I don't employ a way to deal, I'll absolutely end up a puddle on the floor.
Maybe what some see as cold or callous, is actually strength.
Strength and self-preservation. Because watching someone you love so much suffer with health problems, as well as live with the fear of losing them, hurts. It hurts bad.
There is a constant battle going on inside me to find a balance between the stress and fear on one hand, and the gratitude and joy that my husband is still with us on the other.
So I feel and process. I deal and find gratitude. I self-preserve and I get stronger.
Or it's really just fear and denial. I honestly don't know which. Could be both or all.
All I know is I have my ways of coping. Right, wrong or indifferent....