Epiphany #2 in Caregiving

A couple of weeks ago I wrote this:

“I just had an epiphany, that kind of sudden insight into some portion of reality that, while it was enlightening, makes me feel stupid for not realizing what everybody else seemed to know.”

Well it happened again, yet another insight into my own lack of insight.

Last week we went to see my wife’s urologist, a kind and intelligent woman. She outlined the possible issues and asked my wife to give her a urine specimen and when she couldn’t gave us one of those little sealed plastic jars.

So everybody day, I ask my wife to give a specimen, hold out the specimen container and she always says, ‘don’t open that’ then takes the jar away. Today I realize what must be happening; she doesn’t have the knowledge to do this, how to urinate and then get it into the jar.

So I drove around this morning and finally found a medical supply household with a suitable device (a plastic collection pan that sits on the rim of the toilet and allows one to pour the urine into a specimen bottle.) I came home and showed the device to her and she said, ‘I have those’ and pointed to two others she had in her closet.

Still no specimen.

Always ‘tomorrow.’

This taught me a lesson: Never assume anything; I must always consider, in light of how she is acting now, whether she can actually remember how to do what I’m asking.

Thanks to all of you who have gone through things like this, yet never told me that I am a typical male dunce.

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