Sunday, September 6, 2015

Memories and flashbacks

May, 2007
Huge rainstorm over Shabbat
I worried, he was planning on taking the "back roads" home.
I wanted to know he was safe, I needed my doctor.
He called Saturday night, just as he did this evening with my friend.
I was relieved he made it back safely.
I only knew I needed him.

He apologized, asked for forgiveness.
I, confused, still in the thick of it.
My children were so young... 1+1/2, 4, 6, 7+1/2.
I couldn't take care of them.

I didn't yet understand the magnitude of how my life was to change.
Yes, I forgive you.
I didn't yet understand for what, exactly.

It was confusing.

PTSD came on strong, I was lost.
Psychiatric hospitalization, 2008, three entire weeks.
medicines, coping.
I called him from that place. It was again Yom Kippur, a year gone by.
I said I didn't forgive him, I now know more about my story.

I was angry, weak, still sick.
Hospitalizations, infections, operations.
Many, many more doctors. All shocked, I was so young.
It kept coming at me, like speeding cars at night.

One operation broke me, it was just too painful. The mesh inserted under gapey.
One whole year I felt the sharp pain of that surgery, the clips attaching it, latching on to what muscle was left.
Morphine, Methadone, Fentanyl, nerve pain medicine, more and more Fentanyl.
Pain relief.
I still feel those clips in my belly. Every day, all the time. Even at this exact minute.

I still couldn't take care of my kids.
Nanny's in and out like a revolving door to my house.
One actually stole from us at the same time she was caring deeply for my children,
lying down with my baby to help him sleep.
I wanted to do that.
She stole things from us.
Caring for my baby was stolen from me.

Did I forgive him?
He called that night in the rain.
He worried about me,
I worried about him.

I developed an odd dependency.
It was unexplainable.
I didn't see him much,
didn't want to.
Not a day when by that I didn't think of him, though,
think of how messed up things got.
hated him for his arrogance.

The years went by that way,
Countless trips to the emergency room.
My husband and I had a routine by that time. We'd look at each other,
waiting in the temporary bed, saying "here we are again".
Another week lost to the hospital, stolen from my kids.
Hospitalizations, surgeries, anguish, lost careers.
Morphine, pain.

Then I learned more.
More about what really happened in those harrowing days before and during NF.
A medical detective, sorting through my file.
Slowly facts filtered down to us.
It was written up, this medical detective was angry.

Now I see him, hear about him from my friend all the time.

I am strong, off pain medicines, but usually in pain.
I am strong.
In the near future, another surgery looms.
The "virgin" right leg, never had an operation.
The left leg went through so much,
limping, crutches, scarring, favoring,
The right leg has problems now, as a result.

How long can I live without pain medicine?
Only time will tell.

Pain is in my life to stay.
Doctors are in my life to stay.
The Doctor, as fate would have it, is in my life,
to stay?
To stay.
I will grow from this.
It's called "Post Traumatic Growth".

I can do this. I am strong.
So many memories, where can I put them?
They are coming back to me fast and furious
as I go through my friend's story with her, every day, in that wing, of that hospital.

She says I "ground" her.
I massage her feet and legs,
we listen to interesting and funny podcasts,
My tension rises along with her fever, my muscles (and soul) relax when the medicine works to bring it back down,
I feel relieved when I see her rest.

Now it is she who cannot take care of her child.
I understand on such a deep level, it hurts.

There is nothing simple, or clear about these stories.
Please let me tell them,
Don't be afraid, or feel bad for me,
just be with me.

It's not about anger,
I've shed that entirely. A gift of time.
It's not even about illness.

It's about three souls intertwining.
Four souls... her five-year-old girl.
Light, wise, expressive, happy, dark.
I'm taken by her.

These souls are forever joined.
We may never understand why.

Now I have unburdened my soul,
and I can continue on being who I have chosen to be.

Thank you all, for being my people.
You ground me.


  1. I wish you strength- emotional and physical. May G-d grant you health and peace.

  2. I'm so sorry for all you have been through, but I'm glad you are in a place where you can write about it and grow, and what a blessing to be there for someone else going through something similar. Hugs to you, Sarah.

  3. So nicely written. May the new year bring only more strength and better health. Hugs.

  4. מעות וחיבוקים! שנה טובה!

  5. sad reflecting what you've been through; encouraging to imagine what you can look forward to.

  6. One day at a time, I hope today you have peace

  7. need I say that I constantly love and psychically/spiritually/virtually (if not in real time much... *:-S worried) support you madly.
    Next that that was one amazing post - I always say WOW, feeling as though you have just maxed my charts for wonderfulness/appreciation/awe & admiration - & then you outdo your self in the next one. This was an unusual departure for you - but the result is incredibly powerful.

  8. Sarah:

    You are a blessed soul. I stand in awe.

    Meier Meyers

  9. wishing you only good health and inner peace. shana tova, u'metuka.

  10. The poem was mesmerizing, incredible.
    There are many possible interpretations.

  11. Thnk You for sharing. May you and your family only experience Great joy, health and shefa this year and the rest ad 120!