Saturday’s used to be for sleeping in. 8am was glorious for waking up.
Now...3:30/4am - it’s time to get up.
A year ago this time all I wanted was a return to normal. I wanted so bad to sleep in my own bed, go to work, and come home and have dinner at the table.
Dinner time was always a favorite. It meant everything was right with the world. Nothing fancy. Just the two of us sitting down for dinner. Every night @ the table. It was the normal. Even when Benton moved in. Dinner at the table. When Benton stayed after Treys diagnosis it was the same. Dinner at the table. Even now, Benton and I sit at the same places, and have dinner at the table.
No one will probably ever sit at Treys spot again. That I just don’t think I could handle...As it is now I find myself staring out the window behind where Trey sat.
I got a glimpse of that Normal for 4 days total when I got out of the hospital. 4 days. That’s it.
Day 1 - came home from the hospital. Walked in the house in my blue walker. Brenda was there heating up lunch - Joeys beef stew. I can’t even describe how amazing the house smelled. There were welcome home balloons all over the house. It was a weird feeling to be Home. I noticed Trey was very tired, but also very relieved that I was home.
Day 2 - we went to MUSC stroke center. I was in a major panic that I was being put back into the hospital. That’s the day that out of the blue Trey had Benton added as proxy to all of my medical records-out if nowhere; and told me standing right there at check in that he had talked to Benton and that he wasn’t going anywhere, and he wanted him to be listed so that he knew I was taken care of. (?!?!?!?) WHAT? I didn’t have time to think about that. What was going on? I think I asked Trey if he was kicking me out...I didn’t know what was going on. Later that day at lunch I brought it up again. What is going on???
Trey told me that in the Hospital he had asked Benton if he was going anywhere, or if he would stay and help with me...and that Benton told him that he wasn’t going anywhere. We were his family, and he had stuck around to help take care of of Trey-and now he was going to help Trey take care of me.
He reminded me that I needed to be grateful to everyone for everything they were doing. All through my hospital stay try kept telling me that I needed to remember all of everything and be grateful for everything and everyone. At the time I had no idea what he was talking about. But, in the coming months I realized. Ans still almost a year later I am realizing.
So there we were el pollo loco having lunch. This weird little family unit.
Day 3-we went to see a Movie(no idea what it was-as I couldn’t see any of it...
Day 4 -was a typical lazy Sunday. We did NOTHING.
And then Monday.
Monday Morning we were supposed to take an Uber into the infusion Center. it was time for chemo. But, Early that morning Trey asked Benton to drive us.
Okay-no big deal.
Then when we got there Trey asked benton to come up with us. Okay...
Things got very weird when they called Trey back - I stood up to walk back...and that’s when Trey turned around and asked Benton to come back with us to meet the Dr.
Right then I knew something was up. Why was Trey so skinny? Why this? Why that? It was all hitting me all at once.
We walked back to the lab, and people that I had not seen for months were excited to see me. But, at that same moment Reality was taking a huge swing at me. Everything was crashing down in that instant. But, I was still in denial. Once he got rehydrated everything would be good. I knew that wasn’t true - but that’s all I could tell myself. This was just a bump in the road and we had to overcome it.
I have no idea of the order of events. I know one day they had scheduled an endoscopic surgery. It was supposed to be a quick surgery. I stayed to wait in the waiting room, and had yogurt. Brenda and Tommy had left and asked me to call them with an update.
We waited and waited. It took a lot longer than expected...they couldn’t do what they wanted to do.
From there I don’t really know what happened. I know they were talking about palliative care, hospice was mentioned...I didn’t listen to any of it. I had no idea what was going on. None of this made any sense...we were here to get rehydrated-nothing was going right.
It was Wednesday March 4th - but one day I had decided to take Treys favorite pair of glasses to be fixed-as a surprise for when he went home. It wasn’t much, but he loved those glasses, and they had lost a screw. I had them fixed while Benton and I were running errands for work that morning after I had stopped by to see Trey.
His parents were coming to spend the morning. I knew something was up. I started to feel something.
I had left my mom at home that day, she had just flown out to take me to therapy. We did our work stuff(no idea what) and picked her up for lunch. I was going to spend the afternoon at the hospital with Trey.
Walking into the hospital I had no idea Make a left turn on George Street for me that there’s two things andwhat I was about to walk into.
Treys room door was closed.
I knocked and opened the door. I felt like I had just walked into somewhere I was not supposed to be.
I had the feeling of get out of here. Run. Run as fast as you can.
I didn’t run.
I couldn’t run.
Tommy is the first person I saw, and his face told me everything. I have no idea what was said. I don’t know if anything was said. All I remember is saying No. over and over and over.
This could not be real. I literally JUST got out of the hospital. This could NOT be happening.
Something inside me switched. I was no longer happy and excited to be out of the hospital. I was no longer focused on stroke recovery, no longer focused on me getting better. From day 1 of my stroke Trey had pushed me to focus on me, and my recovery. He was fine-I had to focus on me. On March 4, 2020 all of that came crashing down.
Every thought and plan I had of a normal life was gone. I didn’t know just how gone it was at that time...I had no clue that in Two weeks exactly everything I had ever known would be gone.
It’s really hard for me to remember those two weeks. I never felt so alone, scared, or angry in all of my life. I was mad at everyone. EVERYONE.
I remember Trey constantly telling me everything was going to be okay, and to remember to be appreciative and grateful. He probably told me that everyday. I could not even process what was going on - literally EVERYTHING that we had spent 23 years working on was being ripped away from me, and all while I was not in the right frame of mind (not that there is ever a right frame of mind)
I had just had everything taken away from me physically, and was still in the process of of that...and now I was having everything that I ever leaned on, grew from, and loved taken away. It was all too much. I could not handle anything...I had always been in control, had a grip on everything...
now I had no control over anything. I didn’t know what was going on. I was mentally in a dark place, and nothing was going to be okay.
Saturday’s are now very different. I wake up early, and we head to the abbey. We normally grab breakfast on the way-and have breakfast with Trey. To this day I can not believe that this is reality. I can not believe that I talk to Trey regularly, but especially at Mepkin. Every week I update him on everything with everyone.
My normal has changed. Everything has changed, but somehow stayed the same.