My husband: The patient patient

I’d been pleading with Brent to let me take him to the hospital for days, ever since a large lump on his left shoulder became red, itchy and burning. He was in a ton of pain, and finally woke up one night in so much pain that I didn’t have to cajole too much.

“It’s time,” I said. “We’re going. We’re going.”

The ER doc said he’d probably need surgery to remove the complex cyst from my husband’s shoulder, but an on-call surgeon said to go ahead and drain it. The situation was pretty serious, it seems.

After a painful procedure that seemed to endure for hours (I sat in the room as they did it b/c I couldn’t bare to leave him in there alone), I went over to the hospital bed and bent down to Brent’s face, which was mashed into the mattress. “I’m so sorry,” I said. “I’m so sorry.”

I never want to see my husband in pain again.

Brent was admitted into the hospital where he stayed for 4 days and he was an excellent patient! He never complained, ate the tasteless hospital food with gusto and let the staff nurses change his wound bandage with class, despite how much it hurt him. I held his hand a lot during those days, and he almost never wanted to let mine go.

I slept in his room in a mercilessly uncomfortable recliner with a foam pillow and a thin blanket. I made the rounds to the cafeteria several times in search of diet soda or something more palatable for Brent to eat. The other nights I spent home in our bed sleeping alone. And it was really lonely.

One night in particular I was so exhausted and stressed out that I hit the bed and just cried and cried. I missed my husband so much! I worried about him, the staph infection coursing through his veins and the wound in his shoulder. How long until the pain was gone. I wondered?

He’s home now, and I couldn’t be more grateful. It’s a lot different having a husband in the hospital than having a parent in there. Both are hard, but with a spouse it feels like half of your heart is on a painful vacation. I stand grateful though, today, that I get to care for him wherever he may be.


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