Four deaths, one suicide, and our son has been seriously ill
(Chico, Ca, USA)
March of 2012, my husband got word that his grandfather died. We were sad, but it was peaceful and expected. An hour after that we got word that my uncle who we were all close to had shot himself. We had no warning, and no idea. My aunt, who is the strongest and sweetest person in the world was completely deflated. Not long afterward, maybe a few weeks, our 23 year old son started vomiting and didn't stop. He vomited multiple times an hour for two weeks. He was hospitalized and ended up in intensive care. He stopped for about 6 weeks, everything was normal, and then he started again. Over and over again, he vomited for 14 to 19 days and then had a 6 week to 2 month break. Because he is a type 1 diabetic, it was expected this would be some sort of complication, but all tests were coming back negative. He would stabilize enough to come home to our house (he lives on his own with his twin brother), and we would care for him, but he would always end up back in the hospital. When he was home, back rubs especially helped. I stayed with him, stayed calm, and tried to have a sense of humor for him. But he lost so much weight that every time I ran my hands over the bones protruding from his back, I was terrified he was going to die. He is 5'10" and he got under 130lbs each time. The last bout, he was home, and I knew he needed to go back to the hospital. He refused, and said he would go in the morning. I couldn't leave him and couldn't sleep for the dread, so I woke him at midnight and begged him. When we got there his pulse was 190, and they were having trouble taking it, because of low blood volume from dehydration. I don't think he would have made it until morning. In the middle of this, my husband's father and foster mother died within a week of each other. Finally my son was diagnosed with cyclic vomiting syndrome, and put on medication. We were told that we would know the diagnosis was right if it didn't come back, and it didn't for a long time. Then a month ago he had another bout. We had similar symptoms, and almost lost him again, even though this time we were even more careful. Last week my husband told me he wasn't sure he wanted to be married to me anymore, even though we've always been very happy. We are going to counseling. I think he is just burnt out from grief and desperate for things to be different. I think we will make it, but of course it is one more blow to me that I'm not sure I can get through. My husband has long been my lover, and my best friend. We have 6 kids, ages 17 to 25. Every night I lay in bed and have trouble sleeping because of an overwhelming terror that I will lose one, or that they aren't safe. I'm afraid most of the time, but I still go about my business being everyone's rock. I might also mention that I am in my last year of a masters program, and have maintained good standing through all of this. I'm so scared. I'm so afraid. I'm so tired.