Aftermath part 2: Humiliation and shame–At the emergency room after spouse’s near attempt.

This week I struggled a couple of times with telling Dave something and then immediately regretting saying what I said. My heart beats fast, and I am panicked, anxious that I may have triggered him.  I know this is the residuals of him going toward the edge a few weeks ago (starting to wall me/our therapist off)–that has made me hypersensitive and fearful of setting him off.

Here’s where I left off in my previous post describing the day-after my husband’s near attempt:

JOURNAL ENTRY CONTINUED (see February 24 post for part 1)

Everyone left. I stay at the hospital.  The staff nurse comes out and says that I might as well go home because Dave doesn’t want visitors and he’s resting.  I stay hoping he will change his mind and knowing that I won’t be able to sleep anyway.  At 4 a.m. I head home before the commuter traffic begins so I can make and drop off the required plans for my job.

I complete my plans.  I take a quick nap.  I wake at 6 a.m.  I call my boss.  I apologize that I cannot come into work–my husband’s in the hospital.  She wants to know why, and for the first time I’m  overcome with thoughts and feelings of the previous night, my voice quivers, and I begin to sob.  She apologizes for asking and I try to calm myself.  I can’t tell her the real reason.  I tell her that the doctor’s have to run some tests.

I go to my work place.  It’s only 6: 30, but a few people are already here.  A cowroker asks, “How are you?”  And tears well in my eyes and my heart squeezes tight.  I quickly reply  “fine” and turn away toward my office.  After taking care of my work responsibilities, I return home.  My dad’s going to take Beth to school.

I call the hospital and ask about Dave.  The nurse wants to know who’s inquiring and I tell him his wife.  The nurse says that Dave is up.  I ask, “Is it okay for me to come now?”   The nurse says, “Yes.”  So I drive to the hospital with great expectations.  I pick up the emergency room receiver and it’s the same voice as the one that said it was okay for me to come.  He apologizes and says that he’s sorry but my husband doesn’t want to see me.  It’s 7:30 a.m.  I sit and wait.  I brought a book to read, because I know how stubborn Dave can be.  But I can’t focus on single word.  So I write in my journal.

It’s surreal.  Today’s Tuesday.  Last week Tuesday we were both dialing madly to get Katherine McFee, a finalist on American Idol, through.  Then on Wednesday as I was reading Beth a book.  Dave came rushing into Beth’s room, pissed,  shouting, “Great!  Now my guys out.  Chris Daughtry’s out!”  I feel guilty.  The night before I convinced Dave that Katherine needed the votes to stay in because she hadn’t done so well.  Oops.

I see every Tom, Dick and Harry picking up the emergency phone receiver and being allowed to visit a friend or family member, and I know that though I am Dave’s wife–I am not allowed in and my heart stings.

His parents come.  I say to myself, “Please Dave, let me in before your mom.”  My sister calls and asks if I want to go somewhere for lunch.  At first I say no.  Then I say okay–I don’t want to be around when Dave let’s his parents go in before me.

Damn!  Too late.  It’s 10:25 a.m.  The nurse steps out and motions for Dave’s mom to come in.  My humiliation is complete.

But while washing my hands in the ladies room, I think, “It’s not a contest.”  Well I’m trying to tell myself it’s not a contest, but I know Dave’s mom’s had a small victory.  I wish I was not here to witness her being called in first.  But I must put aside these competitive thoughts.  I don’t care when Dave will see me, I just hope he does.

My sister is here now.  I talk to her.  Dave will see me now.  (I find out later from Dave that his mom explained to him how I had been waiting since early morning and he agreed to see me because he knows I can be stubborn too and will not go home until I do).

Dave must feel so exposed, so vulnerable. I want to tell him that whatever he thinks his family and friends are thinking bout him, what we are actually thinking is “Hallelujah, he’s found!  He’s alive.”


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