Saturday, March 29, 2008

13 weeks

It would seem that having given up all hope of recovery, and accepting the fact that greater happiness, longer life and his one true love was not to be found he settled into a place of acceptance. The doctors had said three weeks, maybe four. But that was a little over 7 weeks ago. He had no energy at all and so movement much beyond the house was almost impossible. But, he had decided that if this was to be all there was and the likelihood of a tomorrow unlikely, then he was going to do what he wanted in the space and time he was in.
At the end the second week, he got online with Amazon and ordered 20 movies he’d thought looked interesting and ordered them to be delivered overnight. He slept day or night as he chose, watched movies, read, played mah jong on the computer, played his piano and did puzzles. He ordered in two and three times a day, paying the delivery boys exorbitant tips. After the second or third time they’d come to the house he found they were willing to make a quick trip for him to pick up some ice cream or a pie.
He found that everyone he knew quit calling, he figured they were afraid that when they did call he might be dead or die talking to them so he didn’t expect them to call and wasn’t necessarily unhappy when they didn’t.
When week 11 rolled around he decided that perhaps he should start enjoying the late spring evenings and so began to sit on the porch and watch the sunset, it was something he hadn’t done in 10 years and he wondered, as he sat there the third night, why he had ever stopped. Mrs. Michelson, next door, saw him sitting on the porch about a week later and said she’d just made some fresh peach jam and asked if he would like some. As he sat there a little while later, eating fresh hot biscuits and her jam he thought, this is heaven.
It was a week or so later that he woke in the night, he could feel his chest tightening and he wondered if perhaps this was the end. He thought about the thirteen weeks. 10 more than they had said, it seemed almost a lifetime ago. He was different now. He had given up the failures that had haunted him all his life. In the end it didn’t matter that he hadn’t gone to law school as his father had hoped. There was nothing that he could do to meet his parents expectations and so he’d let those expectations slip away unnoticed. He had lived a simple, ordinary life, not marked with greatness or accomplishment. The dark clouds of disappointment,feelings of insecurity and the inability to be whatever it was they, or he, thought he was supposed to be had left the building long about the second week and so, as he heard his own breathing growing weaker and more shallow, he found that he had in fact made peace with himself and he was grateful. He was grateful because he knew that God had granted him this time of wholeness to come even in what one would have thought his deepest darkest hour. His walk through the valley, and he realized that in this time of being without the companionship of others that he had not ever felt alone.

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