Sunday, June 19, 2011

Stones of Remembrance - redoux!

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:  Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NIV)
I think perhaps this title should have been reserved for my husband's bout with kidney stones!  I'm sure he'd rather forget than to remember all the pain and discomfort he's been experiencing.

On Wednesday, he had a procedure where one of the stones was manually extracted / crushed and a stent was placed.  He experienced a lot of pain and couldn't or wouldn't be released from the out patient clinic until he had been able to 'go potty.'  This process began at 5:30 a.m. and we were there until 3:00 p.m.

The doctor came to the surgical waiting room and spoke with me after the procedure. Basically he told me he had crushed and removed most of the 7 mm kidney stone. Then a stent was placed from his kidney to his bladder. The doctor told me how to remove the stent on Friday.  WHAT??? YOU WANT ME TO DO WHAT???  YOU'RE KIDDING, RIGHT???
In the mean time, Dennis was taking his pain medication every six hours.  We stayed in Tucson an extra day, just in case we needed to return to the hospital, then returned home Thursday afternoon / early evening.  Early on Friday morning, I called our local family doctor and scheduled an appointment. The soonest one could be had was at 3:50 p.m.  By noon, Dennis asked me to try and remove the stent as he was having such discomfort.  PANIC!!!   I am not a medical professional and I believe some things should not be tried at home! 

I washed my hands as if preparing for a surgical theater, then removed the tape holding the surgical thread in place, wrapped the thread around my first three fingers and did exactly as the doctor had described - pulled firmly out.  VIOLA!   Just a smooth as could be the stent came out and Dennis experienced immediate relief.  Short lived, but relief for the moment!

Just so you know, I have no illusions or delusions of entering the medical field - it is a wise person who knows their limitations!

When we were married 33 years ago and we wrote our own vows, but incorporated the 'for better / for worse' portion of the traditional marriage ceremony.  Thus far we've seen:
for better for worse
for richer for poorer
in sickness and in health
And he's seen me through 'thick and thin' too!  Yes, it's true... I've expanded my horizons.

Marriage, it's not for sissies or the self absorbed.  In all honesty, there have been times I've wanted to 'opt out', walk away, sometimes run and never return.  But the truth of the matter is this:  Love is not a feeling.  It is an act of volition.  I can think of no one else I would want to be there with me at the end of my life. To hold my hand, to utter prayers on my behalf or vice versa.

I don't think young persons today understand that there are seasons to marriage, such as there are seasons to life.  It starts out with all the passion and emotions of new love, but eventually that takes a step back and the season of nurturing children and making a living comes to the forefront. Oh, there's still the flicker of the flame of passion, but not like in the beginning.  Seasons change.  Priorities change. And the love that began seems so superficial now in comparison to the deeper, richer relationship that has grown over the course of years.

Forgiveness, respect and a good sense of humor are a big part of the marriage relationship, too.  We've learned to not use each other as the brunt of jokes for others amusement.  We each have our own set of emotions the other cannot experience or fathom. We are different - male and female and we feel things differently. That does not mean that one is more superior than another, merely different.

And so it goes... the good, the bad, and the ugly!  For better, for worse... for richer, for poorer... in sickness and in health... until death do we part!  Oh yes, thick and thin, too.