Very often when a close family member has a challenge to their health, the implication of how it impacts the family dynamics is not delved into all that much before leaving the hospital. This is not meant to be a selfish statement rather a look into a forgotten fact. The focus, naturally, is on the family member climbing their own uphill battle. However, it is crucial to keep eyes and ears open for concerns of all other members within the family.
*Keep an open dialogue *Express any fears or concerns *Reach out to friends *Maintain a grateful heart *Proper rest *Resume or alter family activities so all can participate *Look for little examples of hope around you *BREATH! *Do not be be afraid to ask for help *Know things will improve
My family is breathing a sigh of relief after yesterday and while we are grateful, for the outcome, today is a day for letting out the breath it felt like we were holding for months. No one tells you how drained and exhausted the family will be the next day or so. I am pretty sure I did not read that information among the discharge instructions!! (Humor is also desperately needed at these times to see beyond the present situation!!)
I read a lot about how to deal with the physical pains but nothing regarding the pain of how to help your children adapt to new limitations or how to set new goals when old ones were taking away involuntarily. I also did not see anything on what to say to your children when they had planned to start the next phase of their life together, starting high school, when in reality one will continue on the original planned path while the other must face a new reality with its own set of original challenges.
Yes, one weight has been lifted since yesterday and in exchange are a few fears and doubts. I love my family and my life but I cannot help wishing some of the answers to my questions and concerns could be found in those discharge instructions. When you are sent off, into the unknown, it can be a little scary and overwhelming.
Hang on to your loved ones, grab onto hope, and never give up!! That would be a splendid addition to those discharge instructions!