I’ve mentioned before in my What Grief looks like post how much I love the podcast American Public Media Podcast “Terrible, thanks for asking” with Nora McInerny, Yesterday, they put out a new episode and it hit home to me in such a profound way.
While I was at the hospital, the infectious disease physician was one I often really liked to see. She seemed to understand what I was thinking sometimes, even when I couldn’t say it. I asked a LOT of questions. She felt my guilt over whether I should have gotten him in earlier. She told me that she was a physician, her husband was a physician, and she doesn’t think she would have brought him as early as I did. That was immeasurably comforting and yet… a part of you has to wonder if that’s true. That same physician described to me what happened to Tim as a “perfect storm” of negative occurrences with a disastrous outcome.
And here was a story about a woman who’s life fell apart suddenly very similarly to mine… a woman who’s husband had a very similar set of circumstances also come together “perfectly” and lead to his death. His death, essentially from sepsis, on the table in her ER.,, because she was an ER doctor! I can’t imagine it happening at your work. And yet, on the whole, I can imagine, I lived it. And her guilt over whether she brought him in sooner… but she and I could have easily traded places for any of it, She even talked about being jealous of a family who got the chance to prepare for the end.
And I certainly get that.
The emotions in all of this are so complex. Some days, I think I’n doing great. And then a song, or a memory, or an issue with a kiddo – or a podcast – will bring the pain and the loss to the surface. And all I can do is sit in it for a while.
“Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it.” Albus Dumbledore through J.K. Rowling