The new normal?

The past fortnight has been ups and downs. Down due to unpleasant side effects from medication that resulted in a helluva lot of pain and discomfort for Paul – as per my last post.

He came through it – but even happy moments can be sad. On Monday night, we were sitting in our cocoon (aka our couch) and I asked him how his welcome back went. He told me he was welcomed back with open arms (literally) and then choked up and said “Why did this (wonderful work situation with amazing people) have to happen NOW?”

We got through the week. On Wednesday I went out with some girlfriends to see the Amy Schumer rom com “Trainwreck”. We snorted and laughed and it felt great! I was amazed at how calmly I could talk about things when asked. And it was wonderful to get “real” hugs from people who’d been encouraging me online.

As this Friday marked Paul’s 49th birthday, it was one of those milestone weeks that wasn’t going to be easy. Friday morning I waited for Paul to leave the house and initiated the brainstorm I’d had that morning: to order morning tea for his office as a surprise. Paul wouldn’t let me book in a nice dinner because we were going for lunch the next day and the electric bill was due (!) (WHAT is it going to take for this guy to CARPE DIEM???)

That morning he messaged me about a withdrawal of $1132.19 from our account. It turns out his credit card info was hacked and someone had tried to place an order at Walmart.com with his card. Fortunately our bank caught it just as we did and put a hold on his card. We’ll get the money back – in about six weeks.

That night I met him in town. First I stopped by a travel agent and asked about ’round the world trips. The agent I spoke to had a mum who’d died of cancer recently and teared up when I told her our situation. She sent me a lovely email with some info I’ll look at eventually. We bought birthday and non-birthday pressies for our nephews. But Paul was too pooped to party so we went home and had leftovers and the birthday boy who once could stay up to 2am was in bed by 9:30pm. That made me sad.

Saturday we had a lovely lunch with his brother, sister in law, mum and our nephews and then took a nap and watched a movie. He was tired and so was I.

Today I let work worries get in the way. I shouldn’t have, but old habits die hard. I worked and lost a Sunday with Paul. Idiot.

I also sent an email off to WebJet begging Delta Airlines for some of my money back on the trip I was going to take this November to see my Dad, who is ill with emphysema and a range of cigarette-related illnesses. Fuck you Salem cigarettes!

Then I had a few ports to relax and the tears came down a bit. I don’t want to lose him. I don’t. I got through the week at work well and was so happy for Paul that he had days without having to go to a medical facility. But he’s lost weight – at least 11 kilos. He’s tired. The man who once devoured a huge steak and potato and downed half a bottle of wine didn’t eat tonight because his stomach was bothering him.

He’s made it to 49. And will make it to 50 at least. Beyond that – we don’t know yet.

The tests to determine whether this line of chemotherapy is working will happen in a few weeks. I’m hoping they look good if not great. Because if they don’t, that’s one less line we have. Damocles’ sword is hanging over the rest of our lives.

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