We have all felt it, that tiredness and loneliness that comes from taking care of a sick spouse. But when you have a spouse with epilepsy, life takes on a whole new meaning.
My husband, Jake, of nineteen years, never took a day off & was never sick. Then in early 2015, Martin Luther King Day to be exact, he had the holiday off and was staying home with our baby at the time. My older 2 girls and I were getting ready to leave the house, when Jake ran into the bathroom after feeling like he was going to be sick. The next thing I knew, my oldest daughter, Andee, who was 16 at the time, came running and screaming that something was going on with Dad. I ran into the bathroom and found my husband in a full on grand mal seizure. I yelled at my girls to go get the neighbor and call 911. I stayed with Jake and ended up having to give him mouth to mouth as he never started breathing on his own after the seizure.
The ambulance finally arrived after what seemed like forever. The EMT’s loaded Jake up in the ambulance and I rode with him to the Hospital. He didn’t come around for about another 45 minutes. Then he wanted to know what was going on, he had no short term memory. After spending 3 days in the hospital the Doctors knew nothing and sent us home.
Since this time, Jake has had many more seizures and even spent 9 days in the hospital this last fall on long term monitoring. Still, we have no answers.
The helpless feeling that comes with not being able to help your spouse is heartbreaking. I hate seeing him come home from work every night, being exhausted and only able to do about half of the work that he used to do. One thing this has all taught me, is to be more proactive and rely on those around me for help.
I had to learn that it is okay for my 18 year old daughter to check cows or go with her Dad to make sure that he is safe. I have learned that I can drive in big cities on my own. I have learned so many things that I relied completely on Jake for in the past. While I know that he would rather be healthy and feel good, we are learning to adjust and find a rhythm for our new life.
Don’t get discouraged with a sick spouse. Learn new things and find a new rhythm. You will find that no matter what happens, if you have a good attitude, together you can conquer anything.
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