As a few days go by, and I have not update Frank’s site, I begin to feel terrible about not posting. So many people pray for his recovery, show us deep kindness, and it makes my heart hurt when I cannot give everyone a daily update. Sometimes it is just because things do move so much slower now, but I think that part of it is that I am trying to regain some stability under my feet, and if I continue to write all of the stressful, fearful moments, I might not be able to deal with them and just move on with our day.
We still have those moments of immediate, heart pounding fear, like today when Frank almost passed out at the gym. For whatever reason, he got overheated, and it hit him like a truck. What can I do if he decides to hit the floor? Not much I am afraid. Lucky for us he was near a machine that he could sit on, and we got him some water and let him cool down. It was just scary – and it ripped me off my feet for a while and brought me back to that place of complete instability and panic. Within 15 minutes he was back to himself, but it has stayed with me all day, right at the back of my thoughts, making me worry about progress, the future and the barriers he has to climb over.
There are times when I am not sure I can keep doing this – the daily flux between stress and worry, to the gut laughing moments singing about “Schweaty balls.” Right now, if I walked into the bedroom and sang those two words to him, he would not stop laughing for five minutes. And it is true laughter, because it is funny, but I still miss MY Frank, that hard core guy that didn’t laugh at all of the stupid stuff I say. I know that many people that got to chat with him this past weekend were so happy for his progress, but did realize that he is not the Frank Mackall that they knew in December.
And some days, like today, I really missed that guy. The guy that doesn’t need me to help figure out where all his email messages went; the guy that doesn’t need help with a game on his phone; the guy that doesn’t passively say “it’s up to you” 10 times a day. I want my Frank back, and although I have him in so many ways, there are those times that I feel helpless to help him come back all of the way. I know inherently that it is not within my control, but it is hard when you miss that person so much, and you wake up each day to see if he is here.
It is not that I am not grateful – I do have my husband where so many do not. But, and there is a big one, it is a different marriage now, a different life, a different family, and it is a big adjustment. Keeping the focus day to day helps, but sometimes, I sneak a peek forward, and that is when I get in trouble. Looking ahead, and comparing Frank to other officers causes me grief. I know, knock it off, don’t do it, but easier said than done. It is the plight of being home, with him each and every day, that leads to those thoughts and worries.
The more time he spends with his peers the better. The more time he spends regaining that strength, both mental and physical, the closer he will get to lifting that ongoing fog that he continues to talk about. But I cannot just make that happen, it has to happen in its own time, on Frank’s own path, with his own progress.
Today I am not patient, I am worried. I am fearful again about the things I cannot control, and the abilites that he has not regained.
Today I am just the wife that worries and is scared. Not the therapist, or the writer, or the reporter.
Just the wife.