Conversations with friends outside a hospital

Can’t even self-medicate

Rum on the rocks

Had a conversation with three friends over the week. Told one of them that I didn’t want any visitors in the hospital but I suppose some friends never listen.

Him: I’m outside, just meet up with me. There’s a bar around the corner.
Me: OK.

For the sake of clarity and brevity, I’m going to combine these three conversations into one.

Him: How’re you two holding up?
Me: Same. Terribly. They’re cutting her open again right now. (breaking down) She’s fighting for her life and all I can do is watch.
Him: That’s your job. Your job is watch over her.
Me: My job is take care of her, and I’m just doing a craptastic one.
Him: (scoffing) You think most guys’d do what you do?
Me: Maybe. But I’m also wallowing in self-pity. (pause) I’m never gonna get over this, no matter how it goes. I’ll never be normal again. My boy’ll never be normal. It’s so damn selfish, I know, but that’s what I think.
Him: I’d think that too. Look, I don’t know what would happen if my wife got sick – and I never wanna think about that – but I’d like to think I’d do exactly what you did.
Me: What if I cursed her? (pause) I wonder if I shoulda let her go the day she collapsed. Saved her from all this.
Him: If you did that, you and I would be in another bar with you wondering, “Should I have tried to save her?” Look, when my mom passed, I kept wondering if there was more I could have done to save her. Even now, think about that weekly. Here, at least, you know you’ve done everything.
Me: What if it’s not enough?
Him: You’ll never know unless you do it. (motioning to the bartender) Another drink?
Me: (shaking head) Gotta get back. I can’t even self-medicate.
Him: (laughing) You will at some point. I’ll help. That you never need to worry about.


We left the hospital last week. She had pneumonia, a blood clot in her leg, and an unknown blood issue that they couldn’t resolve. Since they couldn’t treat the last one, I just asked them to release us.

It’s par for course for this damn disease. Everything is an unknown in an unknown. It’s just hell.


Location: home again, but for how long?
Mood: gutted
Music: I’m fragile – I try not to be

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11 Replies to “Conversations with friends outside a hospital”

    1. It’s just insane. I’ve been thinking of giving you a ring again for some more advice but finding the time to do anything is such a luxury these days.

  1. Due to all the idk idk from doctors. I have this hate and disdain for hospitals. I feel like I’m in healthcare in some way to get my revenge. Sometimes I feel so angry with all the malpractice cases I read and the times when I’ve seen fellows make mistakes in patient charts and prescriptions. I’m not a nurse or doctor but I can see mistakes. Maybe it’s this crappy weather or the state of America but I feel pretty mad and sad today. Keep strong. It’s not your fault and you sure are doing the best any human being can.

    1. I am doing the best I can – I just don’t think it’s good enough against this #$@#$@#$ cancer.

      And we could talk for hours over the mistakes made and chances lost. Like you, when I think of it, I get incensed…

  2. Hey Logan – I just wanted to say that there’s no such thing as “normal” so I hope you don’t get stuck in that stage of thinking. Sadly, you’re not the first family I know that this has happened to, and even though it’s hard, you will find a new normal that will match the changed you. I don’t want to go all psychobabbly grief/change cycles on you, but I have noticed that you have an amazing support system (to the point where I wonder about mine!) so please share with them if you can. 🙂

    1. I do have a great support system, I have to say. But that’s just for me. I wish I had something to save her at the ready. All I do is worry and wish.

      And I suppose “normal” isn’t the right word. I know we’re a story that people talk about – “Have you heard about Logan and his wife?” I understand that. I would probably do/say the same thing. I just wish it weren’t the case.

      Like I say, all I do is worry and wish.

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