Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Grand daughter Laura must have surgery again in an emergency!

My grand daughter Laura Lynne has been having a very rough time for the past few months.  She had an emergency hysterectomy because of problems with endrometriosis, and now a few months later she reports she must have surgery again!  I can't help but be very worried as endrometriosis can penetrate though the uterus and may be hard for surgeons to deal with.  Laura had a hard time conceiving because of it (some women never have children) and so has had her two children quite close together in her early thirties, probably thinking she would not be able to conceive eventually.  Her children were only 3 and 1 when she did have to have the surgery due I understand to the severe pain she had been experiencing.  What is more her husband works out of town in an economy where other jobs would be hard to find right now. They had been buying a house for quite a long time. 
Before she had time to recover completely from the hysterectomy she felt she had to go back to work to help out with the bills, accrued I am sure from medical costs, too.  Her baby girl, 1, was still not sleeping through the night and Laura started not getting her proper rest even as she was trying to work more hours.
From what I can put together she did not think her husband really understood what she was going through and was not giving her enough support during his time home, going hunting for example, so they separated.  He has been working out of town for quite a number of years, so she may have felt she simply could not carry the load at home anymore.
Having had chronic fatigue since childhood, I began to worry that Laura was way over taxing her body.  If she could not get enough rest, could she possibly make it through the critical months ahead?
Now she is undergoing surgery again today!  Her mother also had an unexpected medical emergency this year and spent nearly a week in the hospital, so although she has always been a reliable emergency baby sitter for Laura, she is may not be feeling as strong and able either.
My son Gary and her mother Candy divorced when Laura and her sister Kelly were about 9 and 7.  I used to see them quite often when they all lived in Phoenix.  Gary was making enough money in construction that Candy did not need to work until the girls went to school,  but now the girls were getting older she was thinking of back to work options that would pay more than she had been getting.
When she said she wanted to move to Flagstaff to be near her older sister, I did not want her to go, as Flagstaff is 125 miles away, so I knew that I not only would not be able to see the girls often, but more importantly neither would their father, Gary.  At the time this sounded like a temporary move, at least, until she could see if she could make a better living in Flagstaff. 
I still  had my car and would go through Flagstaff on my way to Utah.  I stopped several times and saw the girls, but this was only about once a year.  Eventually Candy went into real estate and began to do quite well in Flagstaff which of course motivated her to continue to live there.  In the meantime her older sister had moved to live where her oldest daughter had gone after she married, leaving Candy with no family there.  Her mother and father eventually both died in Phoenix.  
Gary moved to Utah for a few years when Candy first went to Flagstaff but eventually moved back to Phoenix because he could not get a job with more responsibility than being an operator.  He had been working in Phoenix as a foreman and field supervisor, and found such jobs as soon as he returned, making more money.   
Candy continued to do well in Flagstaff but my grand daughters had become virtual strangers to me.  I don't believe I have seen either one of them more than five or six times since they left.  When they came to Phoenix they visited their dad, but my relationship with them had suffered from the separation until it was almost non existent.
Gary did not see them all that often either, which is what unfortunately happens all too often when there is a divorce.  The children suffer from a loss that at the time seems necessary.  I always remembered their birthdays and Christmas with a card and small money birthday gifts, and that was about all it seemed like I could do.
Candy may have thought that Gary was not a good divorced father, either, because of his drinking, I believe the main reason she divorced him. She did not drink and was a very responsible mother.  However, there was drinking in her family so she had been around it, too much she may have figured.  Gary confined his drinking to a few beers after work and weekends, which can still be very detrimental to a marriage. I divorced Gary's father, Dean, because he would not quit drinking, and he was so violent under the influence I felt I had no choice.
My father was an alcoholic who was also an extremely hard worker and attempted to make up for his lost weekend days during the week.  He eventually shut his drinking down and began to make very good money during his later years.  Still, his marriage to my mother was not a happy one for her, but she did not divorce him for 35 years!  In those days, women tended to stay with men no matter what they did, because it was so hard for women to make enough of a living to take care of children, especially five of them as we had in our family!
Still, some women must get a divorce as I felt I had to. My ex Dean did quit drinking when his second wife gave him an ultimatum.  He was not ready to see another marriage end, thank goodness for that.
My dad also shut his drinking pretty much down at the age of 40, so my mother could tolerate him at least for his dedication to making more money, if for nothing else.  Love was gone.
No matter how women may feel about them, men still continue to be valuable to their families, their children, often because of their superior money making abilities.  The job markets favor them.
Candy has always been a dedicated mother, so I could not fault her for any of her behavior in taking care of the children.  But I would advise any woman not to leave the area where a divorced husband lives, unless of course, he has proved to be a danger to her and therefore to the children.  In that case, flight may be better.
Women can look back and second guess decisions they have made.  I remember another very tragic case where there was a divorce between a woman I knew and her husband.  He was a very dedicated father and became very angry because she moved out of state with their three boys.  So he waited until they visited him in the summer, and he took them and went underground.  She never saw the boys again while they were small.  I lost track of her, so did not know if she even saw them again when they were grown.  His family conspired with him to keep there whereabouts secret.  The police could not find them.  They were just gone.
This is an extreme case, but that poor mother was frantic.  I thought this was a violent act on the part of the father, but I would always advise a woman not to leave the area where her divorced husband is working, unless there is a safety issue.  I do not think any woman should try to sever the tie that exists between the children and the father unless there is a very good reason to do so.
I know my son did not pose a physical threat to Candy or the children, but sometimes I would call and talk to Laura when she and Kelly were staying with him during the summer custody visits.  I would ask her how he was doing with his drinking, and she would report.  We both knew this was a problem and still continues to be to this day for Gary.
But as I have said many times before alcoholism is such a pervasive problem that it behooves all of us to work a lot harder on what can be done for all who suffer from it.
I am looking forward to going out and visiting my son Gary on Christmas Day.  My son Raymond is staying with him and will be cooking dinner.  Gary is still an extremely dedicated construction worker, and right now is working 12 hours a day either as a project manager or a bidder for a construction company, both difficult jobs.  My son Raymond has long been associated with AA and this December went one year without alcohol.  Gary rejects the idea of AA and continues to drink on weekends and some beers at night.  He is a stubborn cuss, but he said his daughter Laura divorced her husband who does not even drink!
He couldn't understand that!
Well, neither of us knows the full extent of their troubles.
I just pray for my grand daughter Laura today, hoping that she can get calmed down, and recover from this second surgery.  I am praying for the little kids who must be bewildered and confused by all the troubles their parents are experiencing.
It is a tough time of the year for some, even though it is Christmas! 


4 comments: said...

I hope Laura is okay!

madcobug said...

I pray that Laura will be ok and will have a quick and complete recovery.

Paula said...

Sending my prayers for Laura and the children.Also for you Gerry as I know you are very worried.

Jazzie Casas said...

A divorced dad who leaves will miss out on the trust that is built when he is actually there playing the role of father instead of friend. He’ll miss the daily stories and struggles that his child will bring home and recount. He’ll miss the nightly bear hugs before bed, and the heart to heart talks of which he could have been an integral part.

Proud to be a Single Dad


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