When my mother found out she had melanoma about seven years ago, it didn’t quite sink in until one evening when she called and said, “There’s nothing anyone can do for me.” I cried hard then, then got on with it. And I never looked back to the horrible shock of it all.
Just weeks before her death six years ago, my siblings and I took shifts during her in-home hospice care. The day before she died we were all together. We talked. Said things that needed to be said. Then got on with it.
Stuart can’t say anything. He can’t come to grips with what’s happening inside his precious body. He simply doesn’t know. Or maybe he does.
But we’ll never know if he does or not. I can look into his beautiful eyes and tell him how much he means to me. To us. To everyone. But does he understand? Does he understand that I really don’t like shoving a pill down his throat? Does he know that we really don’t know if the pill will help with the bleeding from the cancer that’s found it’s way into his blood vessels?
Yesterday morning, when this picture was taken, we sat for hours. Thanks to wireless internet and a laptop, I was able to do some work. Why, I don’t know because nothing is as important or urgent or critical in my life than he. Absolutely nothing.
He just sat in the leaves and watched the painters across the street come and go from their vans and cars. He watched as dogs and people walked by. He’d look at me from time to time. I’d speak to him.
We were together. For hours. Mostly in silence. Just as we are right now. And I’m listening to the faint rustle of his breathing as he sleeps under my desk.
We had a good night. On the “big bed” in the middle of the night, he took his rightful place nestled on our pillows. With the tiny hairs of his ear brushing against my cheek, or in his dad peep’s ear. That’s usually annoying. But last night, as Friday the 13th ushered its way in, it was the most beautiful feeling in the world.
And today, with the Friday the 13th full on, we’re having a glorious day.
I’ve always liked Friday the 13th.