An Unexpected Journey (Part 8)

The Caregiver (2/20/20)

The thought of solely taking care of my wife after her surgery (“in sickness and in health”) was a no-brainer for me. Acting as my bride’s caregiver was even appealing to me since I’d been looking forward to us spending a full two weeks together 24/7. But now I felt so helpless and inadequate as the newly discharged patient and I pulled into our driveway. Rhonda was pale, frail, and still quite high from the administered pain medication which was expected to last a good three days. She was also sick to her stomach from the anesthetic – as was evident when we were forced to pause midway through the garage so she could make good use out of her barf bag. The short distance from the car to the house became a worrisome saunter that lasted several minutes. It was difficult seeing my lovely wife so unsteady and fragile.

Once inside our safe haven, I cautiously positioned Rhonda into MY chair. Oh yes, I felt the comforts of my La-Z-Boy (aka the old gal) was the place for the missus to be at this time. Unfortunately, within a couple of minutes I needed to start all over and reposition my wife. I had spilt water on her, and a decent portion of my La-Z-Boy, so I had some sopping up to do. I had tried giving Rhonda a few sips of water through a straw (her first drink of anything since the night before) when I carelessly tilted the glass too dang far. I was extremely embarrassed by my untimely negligence, but hopefully the missus was still too hopped-up on drugs to remember that. Anyway, about three hours later it appeared as though “death” had finally left the building. My lovely wife was no longer pale, and she was beginning to act like her old self: scrolling through her phone. (That’s my Rhonda.)

Three weeks removed from her breast cancer surgery, Rhonda has not experienced much pain. Severe bruising and discoloration, yes. A twinge (as she calls them) every now and then, check. Two fairly sizable, itchy incisions, and one sporadically uncomfortable armpit area – presumably due to the removal of a lymph node, check and double check. But pain? No. This cancer ordeal has been a new experience for us, and I would not wish it on anyone, but we are both very grateful because we know Rhonda’s situation could be a whole lot worse. By now, you should know WHO we are thankful to and WHO is worthy of our praise!


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