Remember how last Friday my hubby received the phone call that opened the door to the rest of our lives? Well the amount of work it's going to take to actually step through that door is daunting. Really, really daunting. And last Friday as we stared at each other stupidly we felt that weight settle in squarely on our shoulders. And then my husband jumped on a plane headed for Guatemala to translate for a whole bunch of physicians doing surgeries and treatments for the less fortunate and as he kissed me goodbye he asked me to start working on things to get the ball rolling. Commence meltdown. THANKS A LOT. Gary doesn't get back until Sunday night and with each passing day this weight gets heavier and more awkward. Filling out government loan applications, filing tax returns and paying deposits is not my forte, that kind of stuff is Gary's department. It's as if a dog chewed off my right arm for lunch and all I have to work with now is my left arm which technically functions, but it's slower, the fingers aren't as nimble or the muscles as strong. My right arm could do a much better job and BY GOLLY I WANT MY RIGHT ARM BACK.
I'm trying, really I am, to stay calm and focused, to get at least one or two things accomplished every day, to get us one step closer, but I get so far until I hit a wall and I think I could do so much more if I could at least COMMUNICATE with my right arm. Ya know discuss issues and make decisions. As it is phone rates to and from Guatemala are pricey and time is limited for him to stop in an Internet cafe so contact with my one and only has been nonexistent with one exception. Gary sent me an email yesterday that made me think Oh my gosh, is he going to get in trouble?! He's not allowed to do that! And then I remembered that he's not in the United States. The standards, rules, and regulations our country sets don't apply in Guatemala. Here's an excerpt from that email:
I just have a minute before they call me AGAIN. I just wanted to let you know that I am doing fine and have been very, VERY busy. Yeah, I am translating a little bit when they are short and I am not busy, but it is not my main job. I am in charge of the lab and when I say in charge I mean in CHARGE. I have probably drawn blood from the antecubital vein (it is the one on the other side of your elbow) at least 100 times so far, and will get even more in the next couple of days. I had never drawn blood before in my life, and the only instructions they gave me were and I quote:
That was it. I had to figure it out on my own (and I have only had to ask for help maybe 5 times so far). I also have to run all of the labs that we get (and I had to figure out how to do that too). Some of the nurse practitioner students here are asking ME to teach them how to draw blood.
P.S. I got to see part of an amputation.... yummy :)
Crazy, huh? I mean it's not like they asked him to do a heart transplant, but still to toss him into a situation like that with no former training and to have him handle it so well, that's why my husband is going to make an incredible doctor. And even though I'm sure it's been nerve-wrecking and unexpected, I know he's loving every minute of it. Medical school will probably be some of the hardest and most strenuous times Gary will endure, but I imagine that it will be some of the best as well because Gary will be doing what he loves most. Learning.