In sickness and in health: It’s been stormy but there are blessings in the clouds

Earlier this year, Rebecca’s husband, Nick, was hit by a car and seriously injured. Here, in one of a series of columns, she writes about the aftermath of his accident

Share

Nick’s accident is the worst thing that has ever happened to him, obviously, and to me. I have to add “so far” because I do worry that something else will come along to add insult to traumatic brain injury.

I’m constantly checking myself for lumps and compulsively switching everything off in a bid to stave off burning the house down. I torment myself with questions without answer.

Will Nick ever recover? Will he wish that he hadn’t? How will his daughter cope with the already rocky road of adolescence without her dad? How will I find the strength to keep fighting, to stay strong, to be Nick’s wife as well as his carer?

But – cliché klaxon – every cloud has a silver lining, and while the past five months have been stormy, to say the least, they have also had blessings wrapped up in the cumuli.

Some of the silveriest are two friends of mine and Nick’s, Samuel and David. They have opened their hearts, and their home, to me and to Nick’s daughter Mia, since the accident. They live near her, and to the hospital where Nick is. They have scooped me up and showered me with love. Walking their puppy, Maggie, makes me glad to be alive. They have given me keys to their house, a place that I think of as my own version of Rivendell, the last homely house.

I try to say thank you in words and in actions – I bought a bench for us all, I do my utmost to remember all the complicated housekeeping rules, I bring treats and make an effort to be entertaining. I don’t think there’ll ever be enough good deeds to show them my gratitude, though.

Being able to speak to Mia’s mum is another priceless silver lining. She bought me a ticket to Mia’s school play and introduced me to some of the other school mums. After a chequered decade, I can now tell her how proud I am of her daughter and what an amazing job she’s done in bringing up this wonderful, funny, clever girl.

Another triumph to come out of adversity is that I have stopped being a coward about driving and have womanned up. I need to see Nick and I need to drive to do so.

Who could have imagined that a car accident would get me back behind the wheel after more than a decade of being a wuss. These days, I can also ring up 25 companies to argue with them about direct debits and only cry once (or twice). I have become friends with people – Cath and Nick, Blake – who are just so bloody great that I have to pinch myself.

It’s all right for me, of course. I’m not the one lying in a lonely hospital bed. But I hope that Nick knows, or will know one day, how much he’s loved. His accident has had people flocking to see him, to ask about him, to talk about him and to pray for him.

He’s in a lot of hearts, including my own. Before, I knew that I loved him no matter what, and now that we’re dealing with the “what”, I know how precious it is that our love was – is – so solid. It’s been the worst of times, but also seen some of the best.

READ MORE:
What's the point in the Tour de France?
What happens in Shagaluf no longer stays there
The debate on climate change proves that balance shouldn't get in the way of truth

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Solution Architect - Contract

£500 - £600 per day: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Solution Architect is requir...

360 Resourcing Solutions: Export Sales Coordinator

£18k - 20k per year: 360 Resourcing Solutions: ROLE: Export Sales Coordinato...

Recruitment Genius: B2B Telesales Executive - OTE £35,000+

£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The largest developer of mobile...

SThree: Talent Acquisition Consultant

£22500 - £27000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: Since our inception in 1986, STh...

Day In a Page

Read Next
The old 1,000 Greek drachma notes and current 20 euros  

Greece debt crisis: History shows 'new drachma' is nothing to fear

Ben Chu
David Cameron leaves Number 10 to speak at Parliament  

Tunisia attack: To prevent more bloodshed we must accept that containment has not worked

Patrick Cockburn
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map
Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

Lionel, Patti, Burt and The Who rock Glasto

This was the year of 24-carat Golden Oldies
Paris Fashion Week

Paris Fashion Week

Thom Browne's scarecrows offer a rare beacon in commercial offerings
A year of the caliphate:

Isis, a year of the caliphate

Who can defeat the so-called 'Islamic State' – and how?
Marks and Spencer: Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?

Marks and Spencer

Can a new team of designers put the spark back into the high-street brand?
'We haven't invaded France': Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak

'We haven't invaded France'

Italy's Prime Minister 'reclaims' Europe's highest peak
Isis in Kobani: Why we ignore the worst of the massacres

Why do we ignore the worst of the massacres?

The West’s determination not to offend its Sunni allies helps Isis and puts us all at risk, says Patrick Cockburn
7/7 bombings 10 years on: Four emergency workers who saved lives recall the shocking day that 52 people were killed

Remembering 7/7 ten years on

Four emergency workers recall their memories of that day – and reveal how it's affected them ever since
Humans: Are the scientists developing robots in danger of replicating the hit Channel 4 drama?

They’re here to help

We want robots to do our drudge work, and to look enough like us for comfort. But are the scientists developing artificial intelligence in danger of replicating the TV drama Humans?
Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

Time to lay these myths about the Deep South to rest

'Heritage' is a loaded word in the Dixie, but the Charleston killings show how dangerous it is to cling to a deadly past, says Rupert Cornwell
What exactly does 'one' mean? Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue

What exactly does 'one' mean?

Court of Appeal passes judgement on thorny mathematical issue