For those that have not noticed, I have been away. I was way down under, down under a large pile of covers. This served a dual purpose; I was wonderfully warm and cozy and with the covers pulled over my head I was invisible (well it seemed to work when I was three).,
I was dragged from my hiding place kicking and screaming; “Mom is expecting us for breakfast, get dressed, you can have your coffee on the way.”
“Mom”, is Marion (Wicked Witch of the West, one of the octogenarian couple and mother to the SWMBO), Marion is suffering with cancer and is at present going through the first of four cycles of chemotherapy; I have assisted with her in-home care.
“John (elder brother to the SWMBO and present care giver to “Mom”).wants to have a talk.”
Family conversations, at least those within the SWMBO’s family, are not on my top ten best things; actually sitting in on one thiumeir conversations is like being a very special corner of Hell.
Dad (John senior, male component of the octogenarian couple) was at the kitchen staring at his empty coffee cup and trying desperetly to reach through the fog of his dementia and remember what he was going to do with this thing in his hand. “Mom” was in her bed, sighing, afraid to get up, mentally reviewing her morning list of medications, “Cyndi”, she yelled down, “do I have any Imodium…I have to have Imodium, I’ve got diarrhea again. Where’s my orange juice, can’t take my pills without my orange juice.”
John (the elder brother)sat in the blue wing-back chair tucked in the far corner of the living room, his face concealed by the open book he held.
“How long has she had diarrhea, Johnnie?”
“Since Thursday.” He turned a page. “I’m leaving next Tuesday .” His head turned slightly to his right as moved his gaze to the next page, he paused briefly and again, turned the page.
“Mom, and you making it to the bathroom alone? Michael, make sure she’s cleaning herself. Michael’s going to get you down for doughnuts. When are you coming back ?” The SWMBO was definitely in the house.
Never revealing his face, “Don’t know.” Another page gone.
The SWMBO’s voice could be heard throughout the house, “John, come to the table for doughnuts.”
From his chair, eight feet away, “Don’t eat breakfast.”
“Are there any jelly doughnuts, I like jelly doughnuts.” Dad looked from box to box opened on the table.
“Dad, you’ve eaten three jelly doughnuts already,” I said, “can I get you more coffee?”
“Three, are you sure? They were really fresh. Three?…Are there any jelly doughnuts, I like jelly doughnuts…when they’re fresh. Are there any jelly doughnuts?”
On the ride home; “You’ll have to stay there through the week; I’ll come over on Saturdays and you can go home over the weekend. You’ll have be back Sunday afternoon. That should give you time to take care of our yard. I think you know that the only way this is going to work is if they move in…its the only way we will be able to spend any time together…its the only way they can save any money…its the only way…and when I’m home, I can help you with them. Oh, State Farm wants everyone in the Division to put in fourteen hours OT every month. If you were still working I would be happy to retire and help more.” The SWMBO was driving, nibbling on her fingernails, interrupted only by a need to adjust the temp control.
“…its the only way” was fading away as in my mind I pictured climbing under a large pile of blankets and once more becoming invisible.
Dear friends, with my new (insane) schedule and the duties involved, I will be restricted to writing one day a week. I promise to share my meditations from the weed garden and observations and conversations with warriors of the finest ilk.
The NW Oncology Group, here in Kennesaw (GA), provides chemotherapy treatments for 60-75 victims of cancer daily. Some, like Mom, once a week, others; every other week or so. There are no masques there, no casts, they face a common foe, and…and there are no tears.
There are smiles, gregarious outbursts of affection, it is never quiet and there is much laughter. I can not say I know the cause, I can only speculate at this point, but I hope to find out what it is that brings light and laughter into their lives and I promise I will share.
peace out, pilrims