top of page

When the Caregiver Gets Sick

I got some crud this past weekend. I think it is a mild case of the flu because I get annual vaccinations. But, boy-oh-boy...


Anyway, I sort of relived Bob and my stint contracting Covid back in June 2023. At that time, I was extremely worried he would get sick and end up in the hospital or die.


Instead, it was me that got sick and ended up in the hospital. I could only take care of one of us and Bob was the one I was most concerned with. I figured, my bout would be less of an impact on my eleven-years-junior-health and fit self. I was wrong. I kept getting worse and while I was managing to get Bob's needs met, I wasn't meeting any of mine. After taking care of Bob, I would fall back in bed and sleep off the ague, vomiting, and diarrhea--what surely in my mind would lessen. I mean, that's what everyone was saying.

"You'll feel bad for about three days and then you'll get better."


Nope.


I became worse--much worse.


My first bad day was on a Wednesday. After five days of not eating or drinking, except a couple sips to wet my mouth, I couldn't manage Bob's care any longer and called three friends who came to the rescue. For Bob. Thank God. But they didn't realize how sick I'd become.


It was the following Sunday, around 1 p.m., when one of the caregivers needed my input.

"Susan, you have to wake up," she said. But I wasn't having any of it.


She called 9-1-1 to let them know she was bringing us both in to the ER. We have a very good but very small hospital on the island.


This is going to sound bizarro but, here goes. It was there that I remember conversations with other, how do I say, beings. They were giving instructions on how to live my life better. I remember Biblical scripture spoken and prayers that I had read before but had never learned. Now, I know them. Because afterward, after my stint at the hospital, I learned them.


What happened was I had become severely dehydrated. They started me on fluids after getting Bob situated. Within 24 hours, I had been given ten bags of fluid and by the end of my stay, had administered a total of thirteen bags.


Let me explain. For my weight at 126 pounds, the NIH suggests giving approximately 1,100 ml every six hours. So, approximately 4,400 in the first twenty-four hours--approximately four bags. One bag of fluid is 1,000 ml and, again, I had gotten ten in the first twenty-four hours and three more the next one-and-a-half days. We left the hospital Tuesday.


My point to telling you all this is that the caregiver cannot take care of her patient if she becomes ill. Not critically ill. This past weekend, I kept a pulse on how sick I was and was becoming. In my mind, I had a plan set out. I would call several people to help. Gatorade is part of my plan and thank God, my friend Julie brought over four large bottles. Another friend left two containers of soup. I drank a lot of water, what I could stomach anyway. I ate a little soup but my stomach wasn't having much of that so I backed off but kept the water coming. Yesterday was better. I actually got food down and lots of fluids.


Through it all, I managed to do everything I needed to do for Bob. My first day was the worst day. The second and now third, today are better. Not great but better. I am continuing to pump fluids into my system and to keep a little food on board.


My next concern is for if and when Bob shows signs. I will know as soon as he regurgitates. I'm praying he will sidestep this one. But we still kiss and eat off the same utensils. I'll keep watch. The headaches are brutal. I hate that I got sick because of how it effects my sweetheart.


I'll let you all know if he gets sick and could certainly use your prayers. If you're a caregiver, please set out a working plan of steps to take if you get ill. People to alert. A list of supplies: medicines, food and fluid supplies. A list of other caregivers to call for help with your own patient. But make a plan. It's not only important for your loved one but for you. You're an important part of their health. Maybe the most important part.


Thanks for reading my posts.


God bless you all.

84 views3 comments

Recent Posts

See All

3 Comments


Jo szcz
Jo szcz
Feb 26

Praying ... for you both!

Like

God Bless you and keep Bob safe from the flu. Prayers being said. I know this is hard but sharing kisses and forks/spoons while you are sick isn't helping keep Bob safe. Please reconsider the sharing. Hugs


Like

You know you have our prayers and love..as caregivers we sometimes ignore the onset of some bug until it hits us between the eyes...having been in your shoes in the past and to a degree the present, my heart , soul, and love and prayers are with you daily. And never further than an email away..

Like
bottom of page