No words
Friday September 20th 2019, 9:48 pm
Filed under: change,himself,summer,tired,vacation Tags:

Really. They all fall short. He whimpered in his still-shallow sleep, maybe thirty minutes ago. The velcro that holds the front part of his sling had come off, so his arm was a bit free, and he was rolling his body around trying to get comfortable. And it hurt.

Such animals, we are, in pain, or near the end, or at the very beginning. Awake, he has all the words. He charmed the doctor (who already loved him, bless her [literally]), and the three nurses it took to get the bandage wrap off. 5 nights, six days, and all is, from the outside, about where it should be, though that offers no real reassurance. But the tricky tacky bandage, which clearly should have been taken off some days ago, needed 4 and 6 hands to hold and lift and unwrap and brace. We kept saying “brave.” That’s not the word, really. An exceptional, unwarranted, unearned response to being put in pain by people you know to be helping. Honest, and not afraid to express what hurt (and, afraid of being hurt), but gracious and grateful and mindful of it being needful. I struggled to watch the struggle. He doesn’t have a choice, and his little soul (and arm) bore up under what had to be done, and he never really stopped talking.

What comes next didn’t happen today. And today’s silence probably means it’s not Monday. And so the urgency of the now is not met by the arrangements for tomorrow. My adrenalin-fuelled imperative to Get Shit Done Now is unhelpful in the marathon we face. He faces. The tragedy of creating another person is rather Proustian – he’s his own person, lovable but unknowable. I don’t know what he will or won’t remember of all of this. I will never forget the terror of that night. But that doesn’t matter for the pediatric orthopedic surgeon we will or won’t see today, Monday, someday.

The long night was long. But after he, with his splint and sling, bounced back to being himself, the two moments that brought me to my knees and near to being sick to my stomach were back in London – once, playing with a boy and a dog in a back yard, once slipping on a stair in a playground. I was right to worry, as we learned today from the doctor, right to be concerned that now is the time things can get really fucked up. No school next week, which we had blithely assumed would carry on per usual. As term begins for us. Scheduling is gonna be a bitch, but it’s just that, time in small or medium blocks, swapped about in a fucked up game of emotional capitalism.

To my knees, on a bright sunny day in Richmond. Not an Indian Summer, as the Uber driver after assured me, as that requires a frost first, which London hasn’t seen. Just a late September sunny day at a wonderful playground that made clear how different it is. I remember Christo’s gates in Central Park, the saffron i-beams and little fabric drapes (which were themselves smaller than I’d anticipated from the drawings in the newspaper and the web), made a place that was a bit familiar become radically unfamiliar, and then did so again when they were removed. That’s how I see him moving through the world, now, and presumably will ever after. A world that, even on the hilltop of a small town after a lovely meal, when you fall to the padded rubber safety surface, can still expose how very breakable he is, how very temporary his body could be in this world. That his temporary might not be the same as the temporary we all share (even as Humpty, of the previous grief/anger post, has returned, miraculously (snort) to the living yet again).

Dunno. No words. Really. And I imagine the feelings will dull. “You scared me and I broke my arm,” he said, and I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed.



Narrowboats
Monday September 02nd 2019, 10:42 pm
Filed under: Boozy,can't make that shit up,change,family,HelLA,holidays,summer Tags:

Can’t say in my wildest imagination I would have anticipated that watching a YouTuber now on Amazon with a narrowboat and a totally non-teleological vanity project would become the soothing and reassuring put put put put put put soundtrack to waiting for my father to die. Off to Ingerland tomorrow. It seems fitting. Put put put put.