It's the waiting, of course. The early days when nothing substantative is happening, no prognosis is given and people are taking a "wait and see" stance.
It was announced on Facebook, so there is no point in being coy about it. Peach's husband had a stroke yesterday afternoon.
Thank God Peach knew exactly what to look for and what to do for it, so in the first hour, she had given him aspirin, called 911, and he was in the emergency room before that critical time had passed, giving him the very best possible chance.
He had lost the ability to name things (like a pen or a wristwatch) and ultimately he didn't recognize Peach. CT scans showed bleeding in the brain, he was intubated and put in the ICU. When I talked with Peach last night he had been sedated. Her daughters were flying in from Iowa today, which they did, and her son was taking her to the hospital this morning.
I did a lot of googling about hemorrhagic strokes and found nothing good in the on-line literature. This breaks my heart. I think I've known Bob almost as long as I've known Peach. She and I have photos of ourselves when we were babies and young girls, of course, but we didn't really become close friends until we started having summertime vacation exchanges, a couple of weeks at her house, a couple of weeks at mine, while her sister and my sister were doing the same thing in the opposite direction.
The exchanges started when I was in grammar school. Peach was dating Bob at that time. The two have been inseparable for more than 60 years. I was maid of honor at their wedding.
Everybody loves Bob and Facebook has been full of good wishes from all sorts of people. Our kids called during the day to find out if there was news and I talked with my mother a few times during the day. We seem to spend most of our conversations saying "Oh God!"
So it's the waiting and the being "here" while they are all "there" and knowing that they don't need anybody else "there" when there is nothing else that anybody can do to help. If you are the praying sort, he'd sure appreciate your prayers.
I set up a Caring Bridge site tonight for people who aren't on Facebook because Bob never met a stranger. He knew everybody, liked everybody, helped everybody and as word begins to leak out, everybody is going to want to know how he is doing. I hope that someone in his immediate family will take over putting updates on the Caring Bridge site.
But in the meantime, life has to go on. My friend Joan needed a ride to the eye doctor today and offered to take me to brunch for my chauffeur services (today and when I did it before). We had a lovely brunch (eggs benedict) at Ciocolat, which is becoming one of my favorite Davis eateries, and then I took her to her appointment. She suggested I might want to run errands and come back in an hour, but I was just as happy to have an excuse to sit and read my book (the latest Michael Connelly novel).
When I returned home it was almost time to go to Logos for the afternoon. Instead of looking for a short book this time, I decided to start reading the book that our Book Club has chosen for February, Willa Cather's "My Antonia."
No way I could finish this ~400 page book in four hours, but I did finish the first section, and have the book on my Kindle, so can continue to read at home.
I called Peach before we went to the theater tonight and talked with her daughter, who says essentially that there is no change, but he seems to be trying to squeeze their hands. I take that as a good sign.
We saw something called The Bacchae at the University, which was advertised as a Greek tragedy combined with rock and roll, but it seemed more like an audio book with cheerleaders. I'm going to have to think about how I'm going to handle the review.Tomorrow--and for too many tomorrows, I fear--there will be more waiting. I hate this. But then, it's not about me, is it.