And I feel really bad about about it now. In the past few weeks I’ve been filling my husband in on how life was going pre brain tumor discovery. He doesn’t really remember it. I’m kind of glad though, because I was mean to him. And it makes me feel terrible, because he was out of control of his own mind.
In my defense, I didn’t know it at the time. So how did we know? That’s a question a lot of people ask me. Could you tell? Not really. Sure, there were symptoms, things that could be explained once we found out, but those symptoms could be for a variety of things. And my mind thought the wrong things.
Shortly after we were married, right around the beginning of 2014, my husband began getting headaches. Headaches he described as the most painful things he’d ever felt in his life. They would stop him in his tracks and his body would tense in pain. Thirty to sixty seconds later they were gone. I had recently moved the wifi router into our bedroom, under his night stand. Being the weirdly paranoid person that I am, I moved it back to the living room thinking it was the cause. It wasn’t.
He forgot my birthday. He was busy at work, working late most nights. It was awful for me, I was deeply offended and it caused me to really analyze his behavior, how he really wasn’t himself. I thought “the honeymoon is over” and he just wasn’t as attentive to the relationship as he had been.
Then he began to not feel well, sleeping late, being late for work. Sometimes I’d come home at 4 p.m. and he’d still be in bed. He stopped being able to take Celeste to school, she started to take the bus.
I started picking fights with him, assuming he’d come home late all the time to avoid spending time with Celeste and I.
But sometimes he would say to me that he did not know what was wrong with him, sometimes he’d be a glimmer of himself, instead of this weird vacant person who seemed more frequent. I tried to get him to go to a doctor, he said they couldn’t help him. I thought he was depressed. I asked if he had ever been like this before, he said yes, once, so he drank a lot. So that’s when I really thought it was depression. Then he started to fall a lot. He wouldn’t go to bed when I did, then in the wee hours of the morning he would wake me as he attempted to come to bed. I would yell at him. He fell a lot in our bathroom on the middle of the night. At first I was concerned, then I stopped helping him get up and would just leave him there. I thought he was drinking. He was having seizures.
His employee at his shop said his behavior there was erratic too. One night, 3 days before we found out, he called at 8 p.m. seeming perfectly normal, he said he was on his way home. Then at 11 p.m. he had still not come home, I called him and he was really slurry and not making sense. I thought again he had been drinking. Eventually I could no longer hear him on the other end of the line, so I woke my daughter and drove down to the shop. I found him slumped over and he had vomited on himself. Seizure.
The next day he did not remember any of what transpired the night before. He wanted to know where his car was. I explained that I had driven him home. I also told him I refused to take him anywhere except the doctor’s or the emergency room. He found another ride to work, after I made him sit in my hot truck while I did the things I had planned. I was not going to let his drinking and depression inconvenience my life.
Later that night I went to the bar to confront him. I told him I was sick of his behavior and I wanted a divorce. He didn’t even care. He stared back at me blankly, this empty version of the man I loved. I went home and cried myself to sleep. I Awoke to an empty house and went to my Saturday job. At noon I received a phone call from his employee. He found him in the shop, unconscious, he had vomited everywhere.
I said I’d come get him. I was pissed. Here I was taking care of yet another drunkard. I drove to that shop fully intending to be mean to him some more. But when I saw him, I knew something more was wrong. This wasn’t just drinking and depression. I tried to call his family. I had his employee and his friend lift him into my truck.
I finally could take him to the emergency room without him fighting it.
Even as I pulled in he murmured, no, just drive.
No, I told him, we are finding out what the hell is going on with you.
They took him back immediately, no waiting around. They asked him questions. He thought he was 22. He was 33 at the time. He thought it was 2012. They changed him into a gown and handed me the bag of his belongings. I was so worried he was going to be mad at me for all this. As he walked out of the room the nurse looked at me and said “You did the right thing” and I just burst into tears.