Thursday, January 07, 2016

Helicopter husband

My mother could have created the manual for the helicopter mom a half a decade before the term was created. I hated being over protected.

Fast backward to three years ago when Rick and I were getting together. My friends who approved of him and actually thought he might be good for me took him aside and said, "Don't smother her. Give her freedom. She's very independent." The underlining message was "Or you'll be history."

My daughter added another message, "And she'll steal your socks."

He believed both. Some of his socks disappeared. He didn't hover.

Then I developed breast cancer. I made sure he attended all my appointments, although in most there was only French spoken and I had to translate. He had said this is a motivation to speed up his learning process. I wanted him to not feel left out.

We went thru the bad news, the good news, the bad news, the good news. They think they got it all. Chemo and radiation would be preventative.

After surgery, I still was able to maintain my full independence. But with chemo, I was less brave. There have been times walking across the room has left me without energy. Doing chores that should be ordinary were/are exhausting. Unloading a dishwasher shouldn't leave me shaking, but it does on the bad days.

He took over.

"You are a helicopter husband," I've told him as he worried about leaving me alone. For whenever I was weak, his blade rotated at full speed making sure I don't faint on him as I did one day.

He didn't deny it. 

Now chemo is almost at an end. Radiation will be tiring but not like this. In a few months I will regain my strength and we will be back to normal. I've promised him that I will do the cooking for months rather than our alternating under our previous arrangement.

"We'll see," he said. 

I hate being dependent, wanting to do stuff but not having the energy. I have learned that it is okay to ask for help, to not always be 100% strong. I have learned that having a hovering, helicopter husband is a good thing when needed.

Because on my good days, when I do feel normal, he lands his helicopter and shuts off the hover mode, I know our lives will resume.

Meanwhile I need a clean pair of socks, and when he isn't looking I'll check out his drawer. 

Rick has done a dueling blog at

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