There are times when I reflect on my interesting life, full of experiences and personalities and stories I've collected. When I worked as a nail tech I learned so much about the lives and lifestyles.
As a women in Islam, I entered a club where women took their positions seriously and taught each other many valuable lessons and offered wonderful insights.
In an honest effort to help, I am going to begin offering some tips that's I've collected for tricky situations we may find ourselves in, without a road map out.
Sista P's Advice on: Husband in the hospital
1. Keep the children away! - "Children" is a general term that you'll have to decide for yourself. This advice is based on an immature child. Each of us knows when our child has reached a stage of maturity.
They should never see dad in a vulnerable position if it can be helped. Images are powerful and if a child see's their father incapacitated, it may forever change the relationship. They may begin to pity him, a teen male may see him as weak and begin to challenge his authority.
If it is a planned surgery, let them know that he is going to have a procedure done that will help his health. Lot's of details can cause their little minds to wonder and imagine the worst.
Every mom should have an emergency plan. If you call 9-1-1 there should be a trusted relative or friend who lives close by that you can call to care for your children while you travel with your husband or meet him at the hospital. Try to not let them see your husband on a gurney, unconscious, bloody, etc.
If he's in the hospital for more than two weeks you may consider letting the children see him. However, I'd only advise it if your husband can get dressed and sit in a lobby or common area and visit. But to see him laid up in a hospital gown? No ma'am!
Now, if it is certain that he will not survive then of course RUSH the children to say their parting words to their father. In'sha'Allah (if it is the will of Allah) this will never be your experience when your children are small.
Broken legs and arms, do not qualify as incapacitated. I'm speaking of heart attack, strokes, gall bladder surgeries, etc.
2. Always look "the same" when visiting. Don't show up extra cute thinking you'll make him feel better. He'll start imagining you out with someone else. Don't show up raggedy because he'll be stressed thinking you can't hold down the household without him.
3. Pictures of him in the hospital are a no-no. Constant FB posts about his hospitalization, not classy. If there are people who need to know, send them a message on FB and call or write them (even an email).
4. Social networking can also present a security risk. I'm from Detroit. Whenever there was a funeral, someone stays at the house during the services. Why? People read the obits and ROB HOUSES when they know everyone will be gone. Same with illness. If you're posting from the hospital and thanking Ms. Jackson for taking in your children, someone could think your house is an easy target.
5. Of course, keep up prayer yourself. Remember to take a Quran to your husband (with his reading glasses if he has some :o). It will provide you with comfort.
6. Keep his hospital room clean. If the hospital staff is lacking, bring your own Lysol wipes and bleach to clean door handles, toilets seats, bed rails etc. Many people leave hospitals with infections because of unsanitary conditions.
7. If necessary, prepare his food. Bean soup is our standard meal to take for lunch and dinner.
The goal of all of this (in no particular order) is to 1) protect the image of your husband as a strong, capable man, 2) spend time making sure he is getting good care 3) make sure your children do not suffer needless worry and anxiety during this difficult time 4) provide you with time to focus on yourself, your husband and your family without distraction.
Part II: When your husband is in jail or prison