One of the things 2013 taught me was to live moment by moment, day by day. Early in the year, my beloved of 23 years had heart failure. Each day, we would say “one more day”, but not in a grim way. We would look for something fun, comforting, playful, or funny to focus on. Sometimes, that was cuddling on the couch, or playing with the kitties. One of our lads is just out of kitten days, at 1.5 years old. He likes to play fetch, just like a puppy. He brings me a toy, waiting for me to throw it in the air for him to try to catch. When he catches it, he bats it around for a bit, and brings it right back, jumping up to place it in my hand, or next to me on the couch. This provides us with quite a lot of fun, and can go on for half an hour or so. It always brings a smile, and some lighthearted fun.
We had ups and downs throughout the year, along with moments of success, and those of frustration. However, love kept us going. Even when the doctors got challenging, and one even needed to be fired, we kept coming back to that set point of living for the moment, enjoying simple things like good meals, companionship, and the stars found in each others’ eyes.
A few months ago, the love of my life experienced heart failure. He was in the ER and the intensive care for a week. Three months later, he’s doing better every day, and making progress, as a friend put it, like a herd of galloping snails. Lovely image that. A bunch of people wished him, as people do, to get well soon, or be well fast. However, the snail metaphor was really the best for the circumstances. It takes a long time to recover from a heart event, and it’s important to set expectations accordingly.
Along the way we’ve found out a bunch of things about diet, especially about the dangers of hidden salt. We have learned to take each small step on the road to recovery as a victory. He is alive. He is feeling better than he has for some time. The quality of life is not measured by how much we can do, but by how much we enjoy the moment. We are measuring salt and liquid intake, and we are being mindful about food in a new way. Raven is not having any caffeine or tobacco any more. He is measuring many things of the day, including blood pressure, medication, pulse, energy of the moment. I am so proud of him for embracing the changes that have turned our world upside down.
I took a break from blogging for a while to figure out life stuff. We are feeling grateful for the things that are good, regardless of the challenges that are inevitable with health issues. There is love in our lives; we have great friends and extended intentional family; my sister came to visit and help for a month, and we’re coming to terms with the shape of the possible. Will be blogging more with what we find out along the journey.