He shuffle steps up the hall banging on walls with his hand and on the floor with his cane. Newspapers soar into the air, diving under the table as if looking for a place to hide. Innocent objects are hurled to their death as Hurricane George roars through the dining room. My husband is having a melt down. A Three-Mile Island, 10 alarm, all-hands-on-deck, meltdown.
Bang! Bang! Bang! The cane hits the floor over and over, harder and harder. To that sound is added the stamping of feet, the crash of glass and the crraack of a wall giving way.
As weak as he is he still has enough force to put his fist into the wall. The resulting crack and hole reveal more about his state of mind than words would ever divulge.
His energy spent, he stands amid broken glassware, shattered dishes, and pieces of wallboard. He is at once horrified and embarrassed. Salt, pepper and sugar add to the crunching under his feet as he makes his way to the living room.
Once on the sofa he collapses into sobs. His shoulders heave as tears roll down his cheeks but he makes no sound. My heart is breaking for him. He keeps mouthing “Why? Why?” over and over. I can’t hug him--his neck and shoulders are too burnt and sore to touch. I have no words to say that will soothe him. His anger and humiliation are too great for tender words or touches. He is not yet ready to allow me into his hurt. I can see he needs to feel this, needs to go through it and come out on the other side and he needs to do it on his own.
This is another kind of waiting I do. One that is so much harder than just sitting in a chair. This is the wait that says “It’s ok – I understand, I’m here.” It’s a wait that doesn’t judge or condemn. This wait says “I’ll be here when you’re through. I’ll be right here when you’re ready to reach out.”
He says he wants to die. He doesn’t want to be a burden on me. His new term is “Living Hell.” He lives there, with no relief, day after day after day. He wants it to end.
At this point I don’t know what to tell him. I can only imagine how he feels and why he feels that way and I don’t know how I feel about that. The things they haven’t told us still trump the few things they did deliver,
Nobody –and I mean No One – said anything about human hurricanes in my home…..I would’ve gone out and purchased storm damage insurance or at least had a storm party so there would be folks around to witness the phenom.
This is another one of those things I know will pass with time and will just become part of the blur that is recovery but…Whew……I didn’t know I was going to need armor!