Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Chronic Injury: Reflections from a Pregnant Wife

I guess I can call it a chronic injury now. It has been 14 months since the car accident in which my husband sustained a back/neck shoulder injury. The first few months were the worst with him having to lie down or sleep most of the time. Dealing with the injury was one thing but dealing with the torrent of emotions was much worse. I felt resentful doing it all. Then I felt guilty for feeling resentful. I felt irritated with him for being so angry and snappish. I felt sad that my needs weren't being met physically or emotionally. I felt scared. What if he never recovered? I feel proud of him for moving through it and making an effort to get better. However, when he has a flareup I feel a rush of unpleasant emotions… like PTSD I suppose. I guess it doesn't help that I'm 31 weeks pregnant and in constant pain of my own.

I think some of the anxiety and fear I am feeling links back to the early months after D's birth. Husband had a mother of a kidney stone. It was his first of many. We made a trip to the ER thinking he had an obstructed bowel or something. He came home on meds which his body didn't tolerate very well and it took over a week  to pass it. He laid around and took meds and worked from the bedroom. I remember trying to get him to watch D while I went out for something and he said he couldn't because what if the pain hit him. I remember being so incredibly angry. Why does he get to retire to the bedroom when he's not well and I do not?

I guess some of the resentment stems from the fact that when he is down for the count I feel abandoned. Also I feel like I do a lot of research and try things to make him better. I cannot say he has done that in any of the difficult pregnancies or c-section recoveries I have had. Don't get me wrong he is an incredible man who cooks, cleans, shops, chauffeurs, parents and loves both me and the kids whole heartedly. I cannot ask for a more hard working or involved partner. Maybe he just doesn't know that I need or rather want that. I am the one with the medical background. I am the one that does the research on anything involving health. It really is my role.

I am likely just feeling overwhelmed as the house is dirty, I am exhausted and we did takeout last night so something must be cooked. All I want is a nap and a hamburger. How do I let go of/process the emotions? I don't want to feel the resentment, fear, guilt, anxiety, irritation etc.

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