Saturday, May 14, 2011

The First Box Packed, and I Accept Reality.

Arthur is was eating and taking sips of fluids last night. His colour is better and he is talking. He complains of not being able to sleep and the staff woke him to reposition him, but otherwise he is looking okay.

This morning I started packing the kitchen up. I have finally accepted that this is nearing an end. Last night Arthur said he had not lot of time left and he wants to spend it with me. For the first time, I agreed with him. It was a profound moment. I have feared it for so long, cried bitter, frightened tears and told myself that we had years yet to live and love. Now I know we do not.

I am truly helping Arthur close his life with dignity and comfort, as much as I can. Today I packed up the first box, my kitchen implements and cooking pans I know I will not be using in this house again. I will cook Arthur no more pastries he so loved, much preferred to sponge cakes. His food is now pureed or soft. I will not be him cooking rock-cakes, roast dinners with Yorkshire puddings or pancakes, or mixing him a shandy or a gimlet drink.  When I made fruit mince pies at Christmas, when he would steal them from the cooling racks, trying to look innocent with mouthful of rock-cake.

Will these memories comfort or sadden me in the years to come?

Truly now, I am also helping myself to close my life as Arthur's wife. I am preparing to be his widow.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Visit, Thursday.

Arthur is awake today, and his colour is better. The speech pathologist ordered moderately thickened fluids and foods for him. He has a urinary tract infection back and has pneumonia of the lower lung. I sat with him for about 6 hours then I visited my mother. 

While I was there, someone we knew from the soccer club came in, he recognised us. This man {beddall?) is 64 now. Arthur told him he remembered how good a player the man was for City in his hey-day.They talked and afterwards this friend said he would tell other people from the club.

I talked to Arthur and reminded him he has to be home for my birthday. I made myself appear happy around him. We talked about Manchester United and the EPL title. I said he needs to get back home to see the dogs. Arthur turned his head, and with his still-clear and beautiful blue eyes looking to mine, he said, "I just want to see you, you are all I want to see."

My whole body and soul aches with grief.

Now Arthur is in a ward.

I rang the hospital this morning, Arthur has had a good sleep and they are waiting for the doctor to see him. /He has a catheter in. I expressed my concern about him getting another UTI but the nurse said he had a dry pad and when the scanned his bladder, he had about 600 mls of urine in there but Arthur didn't feel it. I am now scared his body is ceasing to function. I need to get myself to a point where I can be with him when he goes through this, if this is finally his death occurring. If I am scared and horrified, what must Arthur be feeling when he is awake, although he is very sleepy. 

Last night I asked him to promise me he would be there for my birthday at the end of this month. He said "I promise."

I feel a part of me is being taken away.It is impossible to describe the deep devoted love we have for each other. We in a lot of ways were not compatible, the differences not just in age, but it is amazing what works when two people really love and care for each other.

Maybe I am being too pessimistic, I remember when I came out of an operation and I couldn't urinate. Maybe it is just the tiredness that is effecting him.

I am so sorry I never recorded his memoirs or wrote his stories down.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Back in Hospital

I had the locum doctor out last night. Arthur has an infection in one lung again, due to inhaling food or drink again. The doctor gave him an antibiotic and told me to call the ambulance to take himto hospital in the morning. I called Arthur's doctor this morning and she agreed so the ambulance came and now he is in a cubicle in casualty.

I told Arthur he will get an IV drip with antibiotics and fluids and will be back home in a week. I so hope I am right. 

He cam home and I am glad he is home and I do not want him to go away and now he is in hospital again. I rang my Mum and she was upset because she is guenuinely fond of him. She saiod he is fading and that it probably won't be much longer. I said I do not think he will see another Christmas and I agreed.

I am so sad.

This is heart-wrenching. I still cannot understand that life has to end. Why? Why must we be parted, how is it that all there is left is some water, minerals and electrolytes of tears? I am afraid to see him in hospital and I must get past this crying. I must be cheerful and optimistic. I must let him know that this is just a normal hospital admission for a course of antibiotics. I can't give into my fears, fear must not rule me.  

He must be so scared, death is so lonely. I tried telling him, a couple of nights ago, in the dark as we talked and held hands, he goes to wait for me and the dogs, he goes to be with his Father and Mother and brother, even his first wife who died so many years ago.  He goes to be with God, in Heaven as Jesus promised. He is not a great believer, but I told him he knows I am smart and I know it is right. My faith is shaky, and I ponder a death that is the extinguishment of everything, as the atheists say, a real end, a nothing. I hope they are not right.

He must be so frightened and yet he will not burden me with it. He once said a few years ago, talking about life, all good things must come to and end, and I said not yet.  I was right, and so was he  but I am no more ready for this than I was then.

He says little things to me, like so and so might be worth something one day, I must make sure I don't lose it. Always he worries that I will be alright, when I will have life and he will have left his here on this fragile earth.

He knows Anthony is alright, but he does not ask to see him. I will arrange a visit by Anthony when Arthur is on a ward and better. I think he doesn't want to be upset by saying goodbye to Anthiny each time he visits. Arthur hate saying goodbye.

So do I.