Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Good Cop, Bad Cop

One of the toughest things about going through this with Brandon is finding my own balance between "supportive understanding partner" and "insistent, hard-assed nurse Ratchett".

On one hand I see how much he is suffering, how weak he is, how the small act of sitting up exhausts him. So I want him to rest, sleep and not do anything but let me take care of him....

On the other hand he needs to get out of bed and start walking, eat even though he doesn't want to, put eye drops in even though it is uncomfortable....

When I take on the tougher role he gets angry and upset. He becomes frustrated, plays the guilt card and even gets mean (raising voices is just something we don't do with each other). And I feel bad because the last thing he needs is anger and frustration - he is already going through so much.
Don't get me wrong - I don't take his response personally at all. I know he loves me more than anything.

But he does need to eat and get up and walk around if he is to recover properly. So if I don't say anything am I not actually doing harm? Should I not push him because that is the right thing to do? Even if I hate it? Even if I hate what it does to him? These are the moments I wish I could use the same argument I do with Dana - "because I said so, and if you don't you can't have the cookie." But that's just not going to work in this instance.

So I struggle every day to choose my moments, to gauge his mood, to balance my approach.

I just want him to fight and get better. He wants that more than anything as well. He tells me he is fighting and I believe him. But the urge to push just a bit harder is always there. And the urge to comfort and console is always there.

It is an inner struggle that I go through....and his mom goes through it with me. And we WILL do whatever it takes to get our Brandon home.

So I apologize Brandon for those moments when I get pushy, for the moments you want me out of the room....but I will do it anyway - because I love you - that much!


  1. Thank you, Taly, for sharing with us the pictures of Brandon watching your gorgeous children with pride.

    Be strong Taly. You are doing the right things!

    Many hugs and kisses to all,
    Robin, Tony and Mona

  2. I found that the hardest part of all this, was that (some) people didn't/ don't comprehend how difficult this can be on the family (specifically the caretaker, in this case, you (and my mom)).

    Brandon has to be tough, though, I can only imagine how beat up he is. Most of the time, it's not him talking at all. So.... be tough for him and for yourself!
    Barry Stetter

  3. Taly - it is hard to be turned down...but if for every 10 times you ask him to eat, he eats once - then it was worth all the hassle. His body needs to walk and eat, like you said, and your endurance is what will help him fight this battle.
    You have always been each others rock and today is no different. He needs to lean on you, and I guess playing good cop/bad cop is what you will have to do to help him beat the cancer and get stronger.
    Stay strong Tal!!!
    When I was visiting him at the hospital with you...even through his red eyes, I can see how he looks at you, full of love. He needs you more than anything now, and you are the best friend he knows that can help through it all!

  4. What a tough position for you Taly...I cannot imagine how I would be...you don't seem to be faultering at all...or even ruffled...it is truly amazing. As always, know you are in our thoughts and prayers.

  5. Taly - I can't imagine a better nurse. Yes, you get that hard assed Nurse Ratchett out when you need to! It comes from a place of love.

    Brandon, keep strong. And do what your nurse tells you to, ok?!

    Thinking of you both with love.
    Pamela W

  6. This would of course be the ultimate definition of tough love. There is a phrase for it and the most important part of it is the love part. Stay tough princess, it is hard for you too, but he needs both your love and support as well as your tough love .......you are helping him fight the witch.

  7. I heard the news of Brandon yesterday at a Pensacola hockey game. We new Brandon as a great kid and hated when "Beach" traded him, but we welcomed him back the next season as an Ice Pilot.

    Maybe you shouldn't be nurse Ratchett, but a coach. He could relate to that more and maybe invoke that "team" spirit that he is so used to.

    My prayers are with you, the children and Brandon as you face this challenge together. I will continue to pray and follow your blog until you are home and healthy and living happily every after!