This is just a little nothing thing, or maybe a huge gigantic thing, I want to remember:
Almost five years ago, D was in the hospital and was extremely ill. At one point he had a surgery and the surgeon came out to the waiting room and was all doom and gloom and told us that D had no hope of recovery and that he was going to die. Here is an excerpt from my old blog that day from a post I called "Will and Grace"~~
Do you know that movie, "Somewhere In Time" with Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour where, when after traveling through time to find her and everything seems wonderful...he finds a penny from like 1979 that blows his illusion of time travel to bits and he sees all his dreams just sucked away in a split second? It's bad 1970's special effects, but the way they just literally yank him from his happiness and his love is quite dramatic.
My version of this on Thursday might not be quite so romantic, but I had exactly that feeling of just all my hopes and dreams being physically sucked out of my body in one abortive brutal vacuum suck.
.....long expository on D's surgery and my conference with the doctor and my subsequent trip to the hospital bathroom that I'll skip...
The minute I got to the bathroom, I guess I had what you could call a panic attack. I have heard of these. I couldn't breathe and felt like throwing up and in one instance had the worst headache I've ever had in my life. It all came on instantaneously. I had to lay down on the floor and just try to press some cool tile on my head to keep it from exploding.
It was there that I saw it all slip away. I didn't know exactly what to think of what Dr. God said. My instincts told me it wasn't right. But I didn't know. I didn't see the dead bone and infection. Everything I have been promising for D, that things would get better, that his pain would decrease, that he would be able to go back to school and maybe get a job, that we could buy a house together, that he could be a part of my future children's life, that he would live...just got sucked away. Maybe this is it. Maybe I will lose another one. Maybe I will be the only one remaining when everyone else I love is gone.
...and later I say...
When a situation seems bleak and hopeless, and you may lose someone you love, and every part of you wants to just escape and cut your losses and you totally have the means to do it, but you don't, it strips away all the bullshit. You stay because you love someone. You don't have to analyze it or define it or wonder why or if its normal or whatever. Its at your very core. Its unquestionable. Sometimes I wonder if many people know that feeling until after someone dies. I have been able to know it with many people while we are still living.
I remember that night that when I got home I was exhausted but couldn't sleep. I had rented the movie "Sweet November" earlier because my friend J said I was like the main character and knowing nothing of the film, I didn't know if that was a good thing or a bad thing or what. I ended up falling asleep after about 5 minutes into it. I kind of dozed on and off while the movie was still playing. You know when you wake up with just that feeling of dread and fear washes over you after an instant? Like you can't possibly take something? It was a lot of that. I remember waking up in kind of a daze at one point, and that song by Enya was playing in the movie. "Only Time." Here is a quick lyric cut and paste:
Who can say where the road goes,
Where the day flows?
And who can say if your love grows,
As your heart chose?
Who can say why your heart sighs,
As your love flies?
And who can say why your heart cries,
When your love dies?
Who can say when the roads meet,
That love might be,
In your heart.
And who can say when the day sleeps,
The moon still keeps on moving
If the night keeps all your heart?
Night keeps all your heart...
And there is a point to this, I'm getting there. I remember laying there in the dark and just in dread and hearing those lines and thinking how easy it would be to just run away, but how impossible. And how I was trapped either way. And just wondering where I would be in five years' time. Would I be alone? Having long since gone to D's funeral and placed his memory carefully in that space reserved for all my friends and loved ones that have died? Would I have moved on? Or would I be cracked and ruined with grief? Or could it be possible that this would all turn out OK, and we would be living in our own house, with our own kid, having our own jobs and that near fatal health problem would be a distant memory that we barely thought about anymore? The future was at a crossroads at that point and I had absolutely no control over it. It could have gone either way. Who can say where the day goes? I just had to ride with it.
I had totally forgot about that moment until just a few moments ago. I flipped channels and there it was. The movie, Sweet November , right at that moment playing that song. (I still haven't watched that whole movie and I still don't have any idea what J meant.) And the movie asked me the five year old questions, and I realized that now I can answer my previous self. Time has answered and we are not in the worst case scenario or the best. But we are doing pretty well. We are still here.
There are these moments that I have where I can't believe I'm here and this is happening. Last night, D and I went to the Covenant Group thing, which I guess I can't talk a lot about because we have a confidentiality agreement. But I think I can say some generalities. After the meeting portion, we got several kids out of child care and sat around and had a potluck. The children ran around the room being children. And I just have these little flashes of "oh, my god, not only is D here but we have two more." My mother is gone, which I never would have dreamed five years ago, but my father is here--another thing I never would have guessed. Actually here, with me and having a part in my family. Agreeing to weekly family meetings. Agreeing to anger management classes. Buying the kids tricycles. Dropping us off to church on Sunday Morning.
Today the kids and I went to church early so I could teach at the first service. D came for the second service and I met him upstairs. Afterwords, he stayed upstairs for a few minutes to talk to some people while I went down and got the kids out of child care. I was in a corner of the social hall, giving the kids juice and crackers and waiting for D. The kids had not known he was there or seen him yet today. Then, he comes in from across the room. In his new wheelchair, with his new foot, healthier than he has been for two years. The kids see him and go running across the room towards him. "Daddy!"
It is these little simple moments of sort of magical disbelief that seem like a miracle to me. That I wish I could somehow send back to my 32-year-old stressed and scared self. "Look how things turned out! See? It will be okay! Better than O.K." And then it helps me believe that my five years from now self may be trying to send me back these magical images as well. "Look!" she says to me, "It's going to be okay! No matter what happens, you'll make it through! Just relax and enjoy it."