After a long day at work, I’ve rushed home to write this blog because I need to let you know that Alun is the best person I know. Truly.
He is suffering from his own depression because he’s going through some very heavy things these last 6-12 months:
– Alun has patients that die over and over when he’s at work. Alun loves deeply, so he takes their passing away to heart and he grieves over ever patient as if they were a friend. I can’t imagine how incredibly dark and painful that must be for him. But he still goes to work. He still tries so hard and he still loves with all his heart, no matter how much it gets broken at work.
– Alun’s wife (me) is a complete psycho. Dealing with that on the daily can’t be good for anyone.
– Alun’s dear friend and fellow Rugby player died a month ago. When she was diagnosed with untreatable, incurable cancer that was going to kill her completely in a matter of weeks, Alun’s heart shattered into a million pieces.
So when I blog about him not caring about my suicide attempt or not talking to me…when I tell you he’s not listening to me or calling me “dickhead”…I’m only telling you the parts that hurt me.
Here’s the rest of the story (this list spans over 10 years, by the way – these are things he’s just started to do, this is what he does and has always done):
Alun always takes care of me. In all the years I’ve known Alun, whenever I have a hard day (more and more, lately) he drives from HIS long day at work to pick me up from mine. That often involves waiting in the car by himself in a dark, dank car basement for up to 2 hours when he finishes at 3pm but I don’t finish my shift until 5:20pm…but Alun does it ALL the time. He just waits. So I don’t have to bus/train it home.
Whenever I am asleep – even if it’s just an afternoon nap, Alun turns the tv off, tiptoes around the house, draws the blinds in whatever room I’m in and listens to his phone using earbuds so I’m not disturbed. One day I think I slept for 4 hours in one afternoon and he just quietly sat and watched things on his phone, not moving so he wouldn’t disturb me.
Alun does all the cooking and about 80% of the cleaning. I have many days where I just can’t move. My heart is so broken and I feel so bruised that I just sit there. Literally just sit on the sofa ALL DAY. Alun will come home from an often 10 hour shift and not say a word. He’ll hug me tight, kiss my forehead…and do the dishes or hang the washing out – then cook dinner. He won’t complain. Ever. He never makes me feel bad for DOING NOTHING when I had all day. He just loves me. That can’t be easy.
Alun pays for the rent/mortgage entirely on his own. He also gave me his work ‘expenses’ card years ago. I don’t understand it but in some Government jobs, you get your salary but then inexplicably get another payment which can either go towards your rent/mortgage or onto an Eftpos card (used in ANY store at all). Alun had his money put onto a debit card ON PURPOSE. FOR ME. He wants me to be able to buy whatever my little heart desires. So his hard work, the times he sacrifices…the times he has hard days and all his grafting – he makes sure I get the benefits of that. That’s pretty amazing.
Alun calls me ‘dickhead’, yeah. He drives me completely insane because he’s stubborn and REFUSES to ask for help…but I think a lot of his background of “be a man” has a lot to do with that. He is expected to “be strong” and “don’t complain” so I don’t know if he understands that IT IS OKAY for men to ask for help. It’s not going to be held against him. He won’t lose ‘face’ if he asks for a GP to prescribe anti depressants. He won’t be less of man if he accesses a counselling service and talks to someone. I think he’d like to ask for help but it’s been ingrained in his bones in the last 40 years that he just can’t. That’s got to be a huge burden for him to carry. And he carries it alone without saying a word.
Alun hugs me every day. He pays me a genuine, heartfelt compliment every day. He holds my hand when we watch TV. He always gives me the best parts of every single meal we’ve ever eaten in the last 10 years. Alun gets into bed 10 minutes before I do (I’m in the bathroom brushing teeth or somewhere logging off this laptop/putting a book away) and warms up my side of the bed with his body heat in the winter or opens a window to let the breeze in for me in the summer. Alun watches my Facebook account more carefully than he’d like to let on and he gets angry if I’m angry, cries with me (most of the time) when I am sad and rejoices with me by making me dance with him in the kitchen when I’ve had a win. He normally cheers me on, encourages me and hopes for the best in me. He reminds me that I am loved, I belong, I am wanted and I am cherished.
I love Alun most of all – because he’s kind to everyone. He helps the elderly reach for items in stores. He helps little old ladies cross the road. He nods to old men, calls them ‘boys’ (“Alright boys!”) and they love it. Alun is kind to animals, he always wants to pet them and play with them. He always wants to keep them. Alun is AMAZING with children. They seem to recognise him as “one of them” and open up to him right away. I love that so much. Alun will notice anytime that anyone is sitting on their own in a group situation (party/dinner/bbq/ etc) and will go over and stay with them the whole time if he thinks they need a friend. Alun NEVER disparages anyone. He never says anything negative about anyone. (No-one except my brother – haha – which is a pretty big deal and shows Jay must really be a prick, then). Alun mows the lawn for our neighbours who are in wheelchairs, he delivers a cooked meal once a week to his friend who lives 2 streets away. Bec has had twins and has a little girl around 3 years old. She and her husband feel overwhelmed, so every week – Alun makes them a meal and goes to visit. He plays with their daughter, holds the twins and gives Bec and her husband a little while to just rest. That’s a lot of kindness.
But I’m struggling and suicidal so I take only the bad from situations and paint Alun out to be an uncaring, flippant person when he’s anything but.
I was hurting badly last night and so incredibly distressed, so I told Alun last night I was going to leave him.
He actually listened when I threatened that. I told Alun I was at the brink of another suicide attempt and that if he didn’t take me seriously and do more to take care of himself so that I could focus on my own health for a little while, I would divorce him.
(in hindsight not really something I could pull off if I’m dead…but oh well).
He apologised right away. Alun didn’t argue. He didn’t say “oh but…” and point out all of MY many, many flaws…he held me tight and told me he was sorry and that he’d try.
When I got up for work this morning, Alun had made me breakfast, had packed my lunch with snacks for through the day and wrote me a long letter saying he loves me, he never wants to lose me and he thinks I should quit this stupid job and finally get some rest.
I read that note with tears streaming down my face.
For 6 months, this is what I’ve needed, Alun. I just needed you to hear me. To be there for me.
Alun picked me up from work today. I loved seeing his handsome face behind the car’s windscreen.
Today was BEYOND HARD but I pushed myself through and at the end was my faithful, infuriating, handsome, amazing husband to take me home.
Alun loves me. I know it because he shows it, he says it…and I feel it in the very marrow of my bones.
Right now, I need you to know (and to remind my stupid self) that Alun’s going through his own darkness. His own hurt and depression so I have to keep that in mind. My husband is drowning, too. We are both lost at sea and we are both doing our best to survive right now.
I guess the question now is – do I still keep going under water to hold him above the surface or do I tread water, stay alive and hope that Alun figures out it’s okay to ask for a lifeboat and that no-one will judge him if he does?SHARE