I think I kind of suspected a day like I’m having today was coming, which is why I chose to take the day off work because Dave was going to be out all day. Don’t get me wrong, I adore Dave and he has been my rock and my angel, but I think I knew today needed to be a “me” day and no amount of comfort was going to help me get through it. I just had to “do it” as my nephew Ian used to say with great conviction. And I needed to be alone.
Since losing my sister Dori to a ruptured brain aneurysm, I’ve really only cried three times. That probably seems like a very low number to many people. I know my own family members have cried on a daily basis at times. For some reason, since my own rupture, my crying mechanism isn’t the same as it was pre-rupture. I can’t explain it, I just KNOW it is. I also know crying takes a lot out of me since my rupture, so maybe subconsciously I try to avoid crying at all costs….I don’t think that’s it though. My emotional triggers are just “different’ for lack of a better word. I am very sad, very emotional, but crying just doesn’t come as easily as it used to.
I could start to tell I might need a good cry the last week or so. I’ve been quite depressed and lacked motivation to do anything…even make a proper tea, which is very unlike me. Just plop the bag in the mug and I’m done for today. Gasp! Dave left for Portland this morning and I didn’t even hear him leave God bless his heart.
However, the kitties had other ideas and kept coming in to wake me. I knew I needed sleep. I was over-tired and had been having trouble getting to sleep, so I forced myself to stay in bed and get some sleep. I dreamt about Dori though, which always makes me sad when I wake up. Thankfully, when I dream about her, she’s healthy. As I did after my Dad died, I dreamt of him when he was healthy, not as I last saw him in the hospital. I’m glad I don’t dream of Dori in the hospital. It was very difficult to see her in that condition when technically, we had already lost her.
So I woke up already sad and went from there. I listened to music, read outside and tried to just relax and rest. I went out to the road to get the mail and a trigger in the mail started my tears of grief. Several years ago I purchased a Christmas gift for my nephew from the “Adopt A Loon” association in the Adirondacks. I’m not sure if Dori, Jon and Ian ever located their adopted loon, but I knew it was Dori’s favorite bird and thought they’d get a kick out of that. Every year since then I get the newletter from the association in the mail and today was that day. I started to open it, saw the headlines announcing upcoming fundraising events and couldn’t finish opening it. In fact, as the tears started to flow, I ended up just throwing it in the trash.
The next 30 minutes were howls and shrieks of questions that no one can answer. No one. There are no answers for the questions I ask now. No one knows why Dori was chosen. No one knows why the Dr.’s didn’t check her for brain aneurysms. Why didn’t they? What was the excuse given when it was requested? Why didn’t the neurologists look into it before her back surgery? Why? Why? I don’t understand and there is no one who can answer that question for me. Why didn’t I die after my rupture? Why did Kim have to die from hers too? I don’t understand.
I tried to get my sisters to get scanned after my rupture in 2006. It isn’t something I can MAKE them do, but if Dori had…they would have seen the aneurysm and chances are she’d still be here today. I’m having a very, very difficult time with that one. I haven’t been in the position of having to actually make that decision to see if I may have a potentially life-threatening condition, but I’m sure fear is the overriding concern. And I guess I didn’t do a very good job of projecting the advantages of getting scanned prior to having it rupture to my sisters. Now….I have lost one. Do I blame myself? A little bit, yes. Could I have pushed more and become a real pain in the ass to my sisters? Yes, I could have, but I didn’t. And now my older sister has since lost her job and has no insurance. I HATE that health insurance is now the only reason preventing her getting scanned.
She may not even have an aneurysm, which would be great. And even if she does have one, that does not mean it will rupture and ever become an issue, but she can monitor it and she’ll KNOW it’s there and perhaps take better care of herself. Wait…do I take care of MYSELF better now that I know I have another brain aneurysm sitting there? No, not exactly. I still drink wine with dinner, I hardly exercise, I don’t eat that great…..life can really suck sometime’s can’t it? Even the healthiest of individual can be taken by ruptured aneurysms. They didn’t KNOW they had them though, that’s the difference.
Both my sister were/are at high risk because of their age, they’re both smokers and they have a 1st degree relative who has aneurysms. I’m beginning to sound like a broken record….I’m tired of it too. Right now, I lack the energy to fight the system, or God, or whomever it is I feel like I’m fighting to get answers. I don’t know….at times I don’t care. If people choose not to get scanned, that’s there business. All I can do is present them with the pros and cons of knowing you have a brain aneurysm and let them lead their lives. I just hate….HATE that my sister Dori has now become one of those damn statistics. But this particular “statistic” was one I spent my entire life with. This particular statistic left behind a beautiful 15-year old boy and a husband.
I don’t understand it and never will….it’s just grief and I know that, but it sure stinks.