She kept looking at the sky. I could imagine what my wife would be going through, the sort of the day she was having and her mood.
Face is in the index of mind. Here, the mind is feeble and not listening. Rain, Shine and drain, all happens in the same day. Like a wild boar in the forest, like a hurt caterpillar curled up to rescue, or just like a peacock dancing in the rain. She could portray everything in one single day and still work with her daily routine. To be her caregiver was not only tiring but also confusing.
As I pushed her in the wheel chair to the hospital, this time, I know she was suffering from mixed episode, severe mental condition with moods swinging ferociously with mania, anger, depression and acute agitation, kind of loss and total disconnect. Her doctor was very kind and he had the patience to help me understand her medicines and also keep them away and give her as per the prescriptions time to time. Any lapse on my part to do this, will put me at the havoc of running with her to recuperation center trying to revive her back to life. How can I forget that one afternoon she pushed me into that state of helplessness? Medicines and treatment that made her get annoyed and more restless. But we had no choice but to listen to our doctor. Patience. Perseverance. I know my inner spiritual strength is helping me as her care taker.
Her mental pain created a mess causing disturbing episodes of anger and argument with my parents and family. Not everyone can understand her illness which is driving her and cannot endure what I do. I just stay calm for I know that arguments or justification will only lead her to get agitated and in a mood. There are times, when I just give up being a peacemaker. I feel like giving her a slap to make her shut up. I want to kick her out of our house. I am also a human and there are times that I just lose my patience. But I still endure.
She strives to orchestrate activities that keep her busy. She seems to be doing best in everything. Suddenly she gets lost. She gets tired. She shouts for a break. I silently wish I could say no to her, when she initiates hundred things at a time, triggering another episode of pain, to herself!
I was getting drained, with stress and worry, striving to look after my child, attend my job without losing it and maintain my sanity in the process. A plethora of moments in the treatment, that cause a deep sense of anxiety. Will she ever recover? She was unwell and often required hospitalization for physical illness just because her mind did not give in the immunity that the body requires. The longer the hospitalization episodes, the wheels of our apple cart seems to be coming off.
Being mentally ill, she often opened the can of worms without even realizing it. Every past hurt, difficulties with parents and parents-in-laws, past relationships, insecurities, regrets, would often surface during counseling. Instances of abuse in which she got locked away, disappointments and fear had to be slowly decoded and put back in order for her to move on.
Listening to her favorite classical music, reading her favorite fiction, and creating awesome network of friends and taking steps of recovery at work and focusing on her childhood dream were happy indicators as she slowly limped back to life.
More than 2 years of being on the roller coaster times of illness and to keep her better, I had to stay positive. Focus on her recovery and our life together.
She gave me love unconditionally and accepted me as a perfect husband with all my imperfections. She blessed me with a beautiful child as our symbol of love. She took me around the world and enjoyed every moment as a traveler. We explored several things together, passionately and in peace. I gave into love and did not give into negative emotions of anger, fear and hurt in spite of my own moments of uncertainty.
Life is just inevitable, with its own package of challenges thrust upon us by no fault of own. Keeping up my own physical wellness and mental stability was key to keep the challenges under control. There are so many aspects of our lives that we have no say in. In whatever we can, it is fine to keep with the ways to control, with the inevitable random nature of things that life throws at us.
It was much easier to explain to the world, when she met with the car accident in one of her business trips. Her bruises and cuts on the face showed her pain and was much easier for others to understand what was going on. They contemplated her path to recovery. Prayers and wishes kept pouring in till she got her physical broken parts were put back in place and got back to action.
But I had no particular way to make people understand her pain. The stigma of mental illness did not allow me to even share the episodes of her hospitalization with family and friends. However, I am just thankful to the awesome recovery which overtime, was a firm build of gratitude that became a massive relief for me. I don’t need to explain to this world. As long as I stay in her world and manage her.
Deadly silent nights when she would scroll through her entire friends list on the phone and find no one whom she could call and speak her heart out, she used to call me and cry for help. The hours of uncertainty, doubt, worry, and pain doubled when she was ill. Yet, she made every effort and listened to every suggestion of her doctor and kept her strong will sustain. Miracles started to happen.
Her episodes are not completely gone. Though they are not that frequent, she does get into a state of despair making me wonder what recovery she had. But both of us kept our hopes high and faith strong. We will together fight it.
I don’t want to question myself if she would change for good or bad permanently. Neither do I have the miniscule doubt of her love for me, my child, our family and her profession. I keep my respect for her and feelings uncompromisable and truthful. Wishing our worst nightmares never repeat. Our relationship and love between us all is stronger than ever. As her best caregiver. As her husband. As her friend! Life goes on!