Sunday, September 23, 2012

Changes Need to be Made


Sometimes, like anywhere else, it's just not idyllic.

  We have arrived at the end of a very difficult seven days.  My husband, who is an engineer was sent to an industrial city in Mexico in order to engineer an industrial system.for a worldwide company.  It is not enough that large amounts of jobs have exited the United States due to high taxes and anti-business governmental policies toward regulation.  Now, increasingly my husband's work will take him out of the US.  This also took him to a section of Mexico which quite recently was considered by the US State Department,  a place where Americans should not go, due to drug cartel activities.
             We were all concerned not only for his safety, but from a farm and animal standpoint.  We keep up with chores here because everyone does them, and my husband does some very important and difficult farm chores here. Since I have had atrial fibrillation, I have been unable to pinch hit for him in the ways in which I would have prior. The kids have certainly been helpful but one has a medical problem which is in process, another has a demanding full-time job, one has moved out, and another is in college.  Even with advance planning, we were all left scrambling to get animal care and mowing done. This is also an important part of the year from a standpoint of readying for winter.
               My husband departed and was filled with a great deal of anxiety from the outset. Things began to go downhill here almost immediately. One of the considerations we extended to our daughter in order to enable her to save to buy her new house, is that we agreed to maintain her car for a period of time. My husband had been promising to replace her radiator. He left telling her to check the water level daily and to replace the water if needed.  She drives a significant distance, and one cannot check the water level from the highway when one is half way there.  Ultimately, the car overheated and would not start again. My eldest son then took over, had the car towed and had a mechanic look at it. It was the mechanic's opinion that the car, which has on the order of 100,000 miles on it, has a cracked block from overheating and is not salvageable. This of course upset Stephanie who feels let down by my husband, and who wonders how she will get to work.  Immediately her boyfriend and I crafted a plan whereby she would not miss work this week, and she cancelled some activities related to her second job.  At that point I will admit to doing what I think most wives would do, but this was probably not the kindest and wisest thing given the circumstances.  I called my husband to hold him accountable for his failure to complete his promised task to our daughter and to tell him the results.  He of course, was in a high level meeting I knew nothing about and was not pleased to be bothered by what he considered minutia.  By then, we were behind on animal care, even on the first day, so I ran out to catch up. I fed alpacas and forgot their vitamins.  I watered dogs, and fed them in the regions of the farm which dogs patrol.  I was pretty breathless when I got to the chickens, in part because of the work I had already done, and in part because asthma is a problem for me particularly when working with chickens.
By then, my husband called back and proceeded to rail at me for calling during a meeting and giving him information on a problem he was powerless to change at the moment.  Our exchange was heated and he hung up on me.  That evening I woke up in atrial fibrillation.   I took medication, and magnesium and prescription potassium, and the kids sat up with me until I converted in the middle of the night.  I felt lousy the next day, short of breath, and weak.


                 I tried to take it easy the following day, but animal care did need to be done.  I paced myself as best I could and made very simple meals.  Asthma is an a-fib trigger for me, and I fell into a-fib for a short period the following day while taking care of the chickens.  I later found I had left one pen without water as a result.  One of the kids found it later on a routine check during the day and rectified this.
                 For the remainder of the week I didn't go near the internet, or the telephone, and I didn't talk to my husband, nor did he call.   The third episode of a-fib occurred later in the week.  By that time, I really should have gone to the ER some distance away, but our insurance now requires a three hundred dollar copay for ER visits, and my husband had not left that much money here.  The two hundred I did have had been spent on the towing, and on the mechanic.  I eventually converted an hour and a half after taking medication for this purpose, but each time it was a harder conversion, and I felt worse.   I also was unable to do any work whatsoever on the two books which my publisher needs asap for a pre-Christmas launch.
                The animals are all fine. Haphazard care has had no effect on any of their health. We were fortunate that the weather was cool here this wee making all of the tasks easier.  However, my husband's trip to to Mexico has had a serious impact on my own health.  My husband is back to running back and forth to his job within the US. My daughter still has no car. My husband spent his weekend trying to resurrect a car the mechanic says is dead. I remain short of breath, dizzy, and easily converted to atrial fibrillation.  My asthma is worse, and this may be the cause.  Some things have to change otherwise the natural progression is that I will be inadvertently joining Daniel.   Changes need to be made.


Nelly Furtado, featuring Josh Groban              "Silencio"

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