This thing called life

  May 11th, 2009 by massmale413

I am a 59 year old male who just wants to go to sleep for a very very very long time….forever would be nice.  I just want to die in my sleep, without experiencing any pain.

If I were to die right now, I could honestly say I have lived my life to the fullest given certain constraints.  You see, I was born with very bad asthma back in 1949.  Back in the 50s, doctors didn’t know what to do with us children with asthma.  So they made us stay in our beds, put a big piece of plastic over the bed, and pump in oxygen.  This happened 24/7, all day every day for at least six years.  No playing with the kids my age, no riding a bicycle or throwing a ball with my dad, and no eating with my family.

Then came the invention of steroids, and prednisone was the new wonder drug.  But as with all new drugs, the side effects were not discovered until it was too late to reverse them.

My parents sent me out to the national asthma hospital in Denver in August of 1959, where I stayed until June of 1961, with about 250 other kids with asthma from all over the country.  About five years ago I called that hospital and got my records from back then, and discovered that they really didn’t help me one bit.

So I came back to my hometown in June of 1961 and found that my parents had bought a single-floor ranch house, which was something new back at the time.  Although it was in the same city, it was in a completely different neighborhood, about five miles from downtown, whereas the old house was right downtown.  So I felt isolated.

Anyways, I had an okay teenage life, although I was made fun of in gym because my asthma kept me from keeping up with my classmates.

I moved out of my parents house in 1973 to live nearer the place where I worked.  I lived there until 1979, when the job I had ended because of computers coming in and moved to Boston.

It took me about a year to get settled in Boston working on my own as a typist.  In February of 1981 I was on a bus and met the woman who would eventually become my wife.

Earlier I talked about how miracle drugs often have side effects we don’t come to realize until it is too late.  Well, it turns out that prednisone, over time, causes your bones to become brittle.  When I first met my wife, I was taking 40 mg. of prednisone a day, and was able to walk everywhere and do everything that a “normal” person could do.

Fast forward to 1985.  My girl friend and I got married in October of 1983, and moved to the western part of the state in 1985.  Things were going great for a while.  We were both working and living a pretty normal, average life.

Then the hammer came down.  The first thing was that my asthma turned into COPD, which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.  So I quit working at the end of 1994 and started on disability in 1995.

Then the effects of the high dose of prednisone started showing up as unbearable pain in my right knee.  Turns out it was pain radiating from my hip, and I needed a total hip replacement. So on December 16th, 2002 I had a total hip replacement on my right leg.

The recovery from that surgery seemed to go pretty well….at first.  But about two years later I found myself stuck with a permanent limp, which I have to this day.  Also, I am unable to stand for any longer than two minutes without feeling excruciating pain.

My wife says she has absolutely, positively 100 percent committed her life to me.  At the age of 52, she has the face of an angel.  She never ever uses any sort of makeup, and yet she still looks beautiful.

But I feel like I am not the man she married.  I feel broken.  I feel like she could do much better than me, and I am just holding her back.

So I just want to go to sleep forever.  I don’t want to feel any pain.  I’ve felt enough pain already with the hip surgery and surgery I had for diverticulitis back in 1987.  I just want to exit this life so that my beautiful wife has a chance to live with a real man, not someone she has to take care of, in her remaining years.

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