Tag Archives: cancer

10 Days

Not sure what Mom would have made of these colours together, but I love them.

I’m home, but feeling so adrift; Mom died last week only ten days after we received the stage four diagnosis.  I know I’m supposed to be eased that she didn’t suffer, but that barely scratches the surface.

I’m slightly calmed by a gorgeous quilt proffered by a guild that makes comforters for each of the patients at the hospice where Mom spent her last days.  My siblings kindly allowed me that keepsake, and I’ve already told The Burrito he can use it when he sleeps over at our house.

I’m especially keen on the quilting; makes for a great rippled effect after having been washed.

Yet….  My heart is ripped apart, scattered along the roads between Silicon Valley and where Mom took her final breaths.  And while I know those ragged pieces will again one day beat steadily within my chest, it’s damn difficult to fathom how, when, wtf???  My mother was fine three months ago, just fine!  Well her knees were a little achy, but she was taking turmeric and feeling better and….

And now I’m beyond stymied how stupidly fast this occurred, how insanely unreal it seems, how mother-effing this day appears.  It looks like any typical late June day, but for the love of God what the hell happened in the last few weeks?  I was merely going to help my littlest sister, Mom suffering from a bad back.  Now Mom’s dead, really?  REALLY?

Usually I’m not fond of gingham, but here it works, as does the black and white; sometimes life is just that way.

Shite; I’ve used a lot of blue language recently, because despite how pain-free Mom was at the end, the friggin’ speed of this has hit all who love her like a freakin’ bullet train.  This is nothing like how Dad died, this is some alternate reality.  I know people die of cancer with barely any warning, and I also know people die in accidents and there is no loving goodbye shared.  But I’ve never been on the effed-up end of it.  This is new, it hurts, and I’m groping around, looking for pieces of my heart.  And my head; oh my goodness, barely enough brain cells to make the morning coffee.  I’ve been drinking a lot of coffee, but never again will I get Mom a gift card for her favourite java corporation.  So many never again’s makes me wanna puke.

Not sure when I might post next, maybe tomorrow, maybe September.  Last week I told the hospice social worker I’ve had one foot in the corporeal, the other in the ethereal, and never had I felt so stretched.  Finally I’ve fallen on my arse and Lord Almighty it’s a killer getting back up.  Currently I’m on my knees, nowhere near standing on two feet.  But on those knees, prayer seems easier, about the only task I can manage.  Mom’s final ten days have been swept away on a hot summer wind, bitter against my face, strangely cold at my back; I never dreamed she’d leave us this soon.  May the peace she now possesses find her beloveds; we are aching tremendously.

The sunset after Mom was gone; she’s with Dad, both interceding on behalf of those left behind….

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A Readjustment Period

I can’t note how many times I wanted to add an entry, titles accumulating on post-it notes and within my gray matter.  Yet, no time arrived to satisfy my blog-longing.  I’d forgotten how much attention babies require, morning and noon and night.  Not that the burrito is an especially fussy sort, but he’s a three and a half week old newborn who doesn’t like being wet, prefers to cuddle on someone’s chest, or to simply be fed.  Add the usual household chores, and here I am, finally getting a post written over two weeks since the previous entry.

But more has occurred beyond the needs of one adorable taquito; hospice has been called in for my father.  Over the last three weeks Dad’s breathing has become severely compromised, one of the issues which arose when Dad saw his doc on Wednesday.  Hospice was on Mom’s list to discuss, but the doc wanted a chest X-ray as well, due to crackles he heard in Dad’s lungs.  As we left that appointment, no further ones were made; the oncologist would liaison with hospice as to Dad’s condition, which spoke volumes to me.  I’ve been at most of Dad’s oncology appointments over the last three years, once bone cancer entered the picture.  Suddenly these quarterly to monthly appointments were over.

That evening, as my bestie cuddled the burrito, I sewed a receiving blanket to a crocheted blanket for my grandchild.  I was due to head back to Silicon Valley the next morning, and this little project was the last one for me to complete.  My daughter’s abode had been my home for the last five weeks, but now that Dad’s appointment had taken place, it was time for me to let my youngest and her son do their own thing.  The atmosphere was festive, although I still needed to write the obligatory email to my siblings about Dad’s news, hospice and a increased dose of morphine topping the list.  But before I could write that note, my brother rang, asking if I’d seen Mom’s email.  The doc had called her personally with the results of the chest X-ray; Dad has pulmonary vascular congestion.  Now his extreme difficulty while breathing made sense.  It was also strange, in that probably cancer won’t be what kills my father.  It will be the results of COPD.

As I shared this news with those near, I prayed for my parents, that Dad’s pain would be effectively managed by hospice, and that Mom would know God’s peace.  Then I went back to attaching the receiving blanket to the crocheted yarn at four-inch intervals.  When that was finished, I gave the blanket to my daughter, who admired it with a loving smile.  I wrote back to Mom, then sent her email to my husband and beloveds.  Then I put away taco leftovers, and started packing for my departure.  I was still going home the following morning; I missed my husband, and needed to be back in my own crib at least for a few days.

An hour or so later, when it was just my daughter, the burrito and me, my girl told me how brave I was.  I smiled at her, and told her it had nothing to do with bravery; it was that I knew where my father was going, and I’d be with him one of these days.  I don’t remember if she was cradling her baby, or maybe that little boy was snug in my arms.  By the end of the evening, he’d been passed back and forth between us, not falling asleep until after ten thirty.  He only stirred once, around three, then slept until after seven, when this abuela administered one more morning feeding for my sojourn.  He’d gotten a bath the night before, light fuzz standing upright on his head.  He’s a stoic fellow, but reflexive smiles brighten his face, making me eager for those grins to be factual.  I was glad for his timely arrival, but how quickly my father’s health has deteriorated kept flashing through my mind.  Our lives are precariously brief, crossing at places we don’t expect.  The burrito in my arms yesterday morning won’t know the man who I call Daddy.  But there’s also a sweetness, which I ascribe to my faith; one day these two chaps will enjoy a long chat about various topics, sports probably, if one discusses pastimes in heaven.   Family history might come up in the conversation, and maybe this time in my family’s collective breaths will be noted; babies arriving, a great-grandfather departing, and all the other accumulated hoo-haa that surrounds these momentous occasions.

The burrito and his great-grandmother, as Great-grandpa nods off in the background.

The burrito and his great-grandmother, as Great-grandpa nods off in the background.

But for now, this blogging abuela is taking a sabbatical.  More is going on than I can detail, not all of it big and amazing, but some trivial and mundane.  I need to buy an iron, as I left mine at my daughter’s.  Quilts await my attention (why I need the iron), as well as other baby-related sewing projects.  I’ll be making more trips to see the burrito, but those visits will revolve around my father.  I’d also like to reacquaint myself with The Hawk, which I perused only for minutes over the last couple of weeks.  How many hats can I squish down on my head, oh goodness, too many.  The blogging sombrero will be hung up for….  Well, I can’t actually say, although I imagine I’ll dust it off at some point.  I’ve tried not blogging in the past, and I’m terrible at it.  However at this juncture, there’s so much to do, and not enough words and time to accurately describe the days.

The days are just packed with love and laughter and life.  Best I get back to that, while the opportunity remains.

What does time mean?

A most contented abuela; all shots by a most talented Belgian.

A most contented abuela; nearly all shots by a most talented Belgian.

Days have passed and the burrito has changed into the happy chappy, little man, or when he refuses to burb, the twerp.  Burp twerp has become a late-night refrain, and I sing different songs, some of which aren’t even of my own creation.  We watched the Big Star documentary a few nights ago, and I’ve been humming Chris Bell and Alex Chilton tunes, thinking about my new world as an abuela, and about my dad.

The happy chappy will meet his great-grandfather tomorrow, when the home health nurse isn’t around.  My father is excited to hold the littlest member of the family, but I don’t think it will be a long cuddle.  Dad’s lower right leg has a bad edema wound, and he’s not firm on either of his feet.  He’s lost ground in the last two weeks, whereas his grandson has gained a foothold, and to be honest, I’m not sure how these two will mesh in the weeks to come.

Which brings me to today’s title; what does time mean?  My grandchild is hovering at a week old, my father is seventy years.  I’m forty-eight, but those are merely numbers.  Life is a constant pull-push of breaths taken, occasions experienced, then the slow (or not so slow) approach to the end.  Now, due to my faith, the end isn’t the end, but it’s still a cessation of activity, involvement, memory.  When my father takes his last breath, all he knows, and has known, will be gone.  What he’s shared with us shall remain, but those are fragments of what he has seen, done, felt, and at times, avoided.  It has become impossible for me to separate my father’s ill health with the emergence of the next generation of family.   I cannot look away from these issues.

And perhaps that makes all of this easier for me, in that my dad’s decline is balanced by the burrito.  He’s still a burrito at night, swaddled in his sleep sack, out like a light.  We put cloth diapers on him today; they make his butt look HUGE!  His umbilical cord has fallen off; we’re going to plant it under a hydrangea given to him by one of my daughter’s dear friends.  Not quite like planting a tree over the placenta, but it’s one way to mark this very auspicious occasion.  And I come back to this fact again and again; people are born, then they die.  I have no clue as to my father’s timeline, but equally I won’t ignore what is obvious.  It would be like closing my eyes and running right into a wall.

Seasonally, new life is blooming around us.  Almond trees are flush with white flowers, which fall to the ground like a carpet. Yes, it’s only February, but spring floods the senses with warm temperatures and lengthening days.  My grandchild is turning from a taquito into a happy fellow, with reflexive smiles that tease; when he starts to grin for real, no one will be able to resist him.  In the back of my head, I wonder how much of this boy my father will know, for how long will their paths cross.  I don’t mean to be maudlin, but it’s a study of life in real time, day by day.  Maybe that’s what time means, not the accumulation of seconds and minutes, but moments and learning.  Over time we accrue knowledge that enables us to love.  Sometimes we are caught off guard by events that derail that plan, but to me, that’s the plan: we are here to love.  If we can look past the hurt, our hearts are made stronger by that which has attempted to thwart the plan, and we love more deeply.  I adore my happy chappy, even when he’s being a burp twerp.  My father’s sufferings cause me anguish, but his perseverance demands my respect, right alongside my overwhelming love.

My dad in 1947.

I never imagined all of these forces colliding right now; just three months ago, my father carved the Thanksgiving turkey.  Now it’s like he’s aged those twenty-five years he thought he had back in September.  While I wish he felt that well now, I can’t do any more for him than I can for the little man.

Which is a very strange situation; right now the little man isn’t such a happy chappy.  It’s nighttime, bedtime if you were a baby.  He’s a wee bit cranky, as many infants are this time of the evening.  We rock him, change him, but we’re sort of helpless to completely soothe, other than his mum, but he’s not really hungry.  My father’s woes are similar; as a daughter, I accompany to appointments, I ask questions.  But my dad is in charge, and as his perseverance requires my respect, so do his choices.

My father and his grandparents, August 1946

My father and his grandparents, August 1946

This is the part of life that requires patience and acceptance; a fussy crying baby and the plethora of maladies that plague someone battling cancer.  These older photographs are precious to me, in that they denote my history.  I never knew my great-grandparents, but they are alive in my dad’s stories.  My mum is in fine health, but the burrito taquito chap will most likely know of his great-grandpa via my tales, and those of other relatives.  That’s not how I necessarily want it, but….

My dad, 1945.

My dad, 1945.

But time can only be measured by yardsticks our feeble cerebral mechanisms can harness.  Yet, what if time was without parameters?  Maybe it is.  Perhaps all this blog-blogging is just a way to unwind after a long day.  But I would love to convey, if I have totally missed the point, that time is what we make it.  Time is as fleeting as a goodbye wave, or as lasting as firm devotion.  Time is nothing we can truly qualify, if our expectations are turned toward an ethereal home.  Time is only a manner of one day’s end, another’s beginning.  Life is very much the same.

Yet another day….

This title applies to both my father and my daughter.  We continue to wait on a little chap to enter our lives, while my dad attends one more doctor’s appointment, blood pressure, temperature and oxygen count taken.  I write all these figures in my Dad Doc Notes folder, then disseminate the information to all interested parties, adding at the end that Baby Watch 2015 continues.  My dad noted twice to the scheduling nurse that by his next monthly appointment, he would be a great-grandfather.  The pride and pleasure in his voice were a balm to my ears.

At length I have noted the similarities my dad and daughter have shared over the last nine months.  What stands out to me now is the passage of time, not the last thirty-nine weeks, but years and years of all these lives involved.  And it’s not merely those with whom I share a genetic marker or three; other folks factor into these equations of three generations, but time spans so much more than Dad’s seventy-plus years, not to mention all the days, weeks, and months my grandson has waiting for him.  Well, once he finally tires of where he’s been living since mid-May 2014.  Last night he was acting like a career in kick boxing loomed, my poor daughter groaning not from contractions, but due to a wriggling little fish.  Or not so little, as the case may be.

My grandmother and my dad in 1945; Dad is about a year old here.

My grandmother and my dad in 1945; Dad is about a year old here.

At the doc yesterday, my father was weary, looking very much like a man in need of resolution.  Home health nurses will now give Mom a hand, but we’re not at a hospice corner.  With my daughter, it’s simply a matter of days, and I’m well versed in the stages of labour and birth.  With my father, the steps aren’t as clear.

How does one prepare for death, while trying to focus on life?  Dad was eager to share of his impending great-grandchild, two of them, I said to the nurse.  Yet, a few days ago, as I said goodbye at his house, he quietly noted that he wasn’t so sure just how much longer he could continue; at times the pain is tremendous.  The doctor gave my father a second look when Dad spilled just how many painkillers he’d taken before getting to the office.  I’m used to these numbers of this, that, and the other, but while the doctor prescribes these medications, does he understand just how my father takes them?  Sometimes it’s in staggered amounts that confounds the imagination.

Having gone for a walk in the park over the weekend, I snapped this vista; so much we don't know, so much to embrace.

Having gone for a walk in the park over the weekend, I snapped this vista; so much we don’t know, so much to embrace.

I can’t liken these days to any other previous; all of this is new to every single one of us.  But then, that is what life is, regardless of the situation.  Sometimes the routine feels familiar, and usually our experiences are to prepare us for what lies ahead.  But yesterday was a day solely unto itself, and today will be the same.  My youngest daughter’s pregnancy isn’t like that of my eldest, and my father’s path won’t be that of my mom.  Which makes each moment one to be treasured.  I’m so happy to be here, hanging out with my daughter, anticipating her bundle of joy.  And while it pains me to see my dad so altered, I feel privileged to accompany him and Mom to the doc, to visit with them at home, and tomorrow, to give my dad a trim.  His hair is getting curly at the ends, and I brought my scissors, drape, and combs.  He has a great-grandson to welcome, needs to be looking his very best.

Dad made it to Sunday breakfast; he would have crawled, he said to me over the phone, to get that chicken fried steak.

Dad made it to Sunday breakfast; he would have crawled, he said to me, to get that chicken fried steak.

No photographs or blog entries can begin to capture all of these events; they simply have to be savoured one day after another.

A Somewhat New World Order

On the cusp of every major change is this quiet lull, where all the emerging forces are stealthily simmering right under the surface.  This past weekend, my husband and I spent time with my dad, and our daughter.  A changing table was the last big piece of the nursery puzzle to be sorted, and we managed to tick that task from the checklist mid-Sunday afternoon.

Photos courtesy of my husband….

All my daughter has to do is pick up some storage bins in which to place the pocket diapers, cloth diapers and covers.  We have Snappi’s with which to affix cloth diapers, but she also wanted good old-fashioned diaper pins, which made me smile.  Personally, I think those Snappi’s are pretty sweet, but as long as the diaper stays put, who cares in which manner it is accomplished?  Now we wait for that baby to decide when he wants his birthday.  As each day passes, I think, “Well, it’s not going to be this day.”

Pocket diapers currently reside in the basket, but will soon be in their new home.

Pocket diapers currently reside in the basket, but will soon be in their new home.

Over the last eight and a half months, my youngest has undergone a transformation like no other she will ever endure, at least for the first time.  Ironically, my father has trod a similar path, and the parallels make for good conversation, when we all descend upon Dad for a visit.  Both he and my daughter are nauseous and tired, also weary of their situations.  My daughter’s confinement is nearly at an end, and while sleepless nights will continue, soon enough she’ll be feeling somewhat like her previous self, albeit permanently altered.  The same can’t be said for Dad, which none of us mentions, but that sentiment floats about, as if we could catch it in a bottle and seal it away forever.

I'm reading from The Runaway Bunny, which is one of my favourite children's stories.  My daughter noted it was the first book her offspring was hearing.

I’m reading from The Runaway Bunny, which is one of my favourite children’s stories. My daughter noted it was the first book her offspring was hearing.

But that isn’t how life works; people are born, then they die.  We can’t look back at Dad’s tenure with chemo and say, “Well, that was a total waste of time and effort.”  We have no idea what his PSA would have done sans Taxotere, nor can we judge how that drug now affects his overall health.  We can strongly speculate, but maybe Dad would have had this deterioration regardless.  I feel helpless, so does he.  But he remains fairly chipper, for feeling so crappy.  He’s taking morphine now, and that helps a little.  He doesn’t feel like he’s going to die soon, what he told my daughter, while my husband and I were out checking the charger on Dad’s boat motor.  She mentioned that in the car, after we left, and I wondered if my father felt it was easier to say that to his granddaughter, rather than to me.

All these new and exciting parts of life, and my grandson has yet to arrive!

Perhaps all these observations can’t be helped, the writer in me being so introspective.  I’ve put The Hawk away for….  Well, for who knows how long, but I did reach a good stopping place, at page 504.  This novel can be broken up into one-hundred page chunks, and last Thursday I inadvertently completed a chapter that neatly ended at yet another of those one-hundred page hunks.  With a second grand-baby due in May, I can’t rightly conjure as to when any writing will again commence, but I have come to relative terms with this novel; it’s not going to be finished anytime soon.  By summer both of my pregnant daughters will no longer be pregnant, but this abuela/author has plenty to keep her busy.

More quilts and comforters than our summer-like January temps require, but every baby needs lots of beautiful blankets.

More quilts and comforters than our summer-like January temps require, but every baby needs lots of beautiful blankets.

And that’s a part of this new world order as well; the changing of the guard.  Or guards; no longer is my life a swirl of noveling feats.  No longer is my dad living with cancer as a side note; his quarterly Lupron shots are like footprints washed away by the rising tide.  My youngest can still see her feet, but has a hard time recalling life before pregnancy.  And truly, all those lives we once lived are gone.  Each day brings a new challenge, and new gifts.  This time last year, I was busy with The Hawk, thinking I could complete it by the end of 2014.  My dad was starting chemotherapy, and both of my daughters were simply themselves, no freeloaders attached.  But nothing remains static.  And while some of these alterations aren’t ideal in outward appearance, they are blessings, a few in odd disguises.

That’s the saving grace in all this, embracing that which looks unembraceable.  Okay, so unembraceable isn’t a word, but that’s the key.  I hate seeing my father so ill, nothing about that seems correct.  But as I gladly anticipate the coming grandchildren, equally I have to accept my dad’s condition.  It’s not easy, nor do I always do it with aplomb.  Yet, griping about this or that is useless, and negativity detracts from the joys.  Sometimes going to my parents’ house is like living in the present and the past simultaneously.  They have two televisions, side by side.  Mom’s is set to westerns, Gunsmoke, Cheyenne, and the like.  Dad’s shows either sports or Law and Order.  While I’m there, I listen to Dad, my eyes noting a black and white screen or vibrant colour, as if I’m straddling two worlds.  Then I’ll gaze at my father, and I see my paternal grandmother, right before we left for Great Britain.  She was dying of lung cancer, her voice raspy and weak.  My dad is starting to sound that way, although much of that is chemo-related.

This is the way life evolves, sometimes so slowly we find ourselves wondering how it was ever any other way.  Sometimes it’s a flash of blinding light, and once we can see again, nothing is as we remembered, sort of like Saul on the road to Damascus.  I guess I’m trying to note these changes, that definitely is the writer in me.  I want to say I remember this very moment, or those over the past weekend, where my youngest was bemoaning still being pregnant to her languishing grandfather, who laughed along with her.

I want to remember this, to tell my grandson and granddaughter.  These are the moments early in our new world order they will only realize via stories.  But this is their history, and it is important.  For all that is lost along the way, I wish to pass along what matters.

A little something just for me….

Amid writing, waiting for a baby’s arrival, and wondering if/when my dad is going to feel better, I’ve started a lap quilt for myself.  I cut out the fabrics last week, have been sewing them together since Saturday.  Today I’ll complete the quilt top, and possibly sort the rest of the sandwich.  I’m pretty sure I have an adequate backing, batting is sufficient, and the binding is laying atop in the above photo, some scraps from my birthday quilt supplemented with strips from prints within the quilt.

After nearly a year of this, I have accumulated enough of a stash to pull a quilt outta my hat.

Right now my life is sort of on stand-by.  My youngest daughter is due quite soon, but not soon enough that I have to be there.  Meanwhile my father is trudging along, chemo late effects causing him days worse than when he was actually receiving chemotherapy.  At this moment I’m home, poking about with words, hawks, quilts, and the occasional basketball game, which suffices until baseball season starts in a couple of months’ time.

The flower print caught my eye, and I couldn't say no.

The flower print caught my eye, and I couldn’t say no.

By then, I’ll be an abuela.  For now, I’m waiting.

And while I wait, I keep busy.  Writing takes up the bulk of the morning, but there’s an afternoon aching to be filled with activities.  This quilt is partially made up of fabrics my eldest gave me last year for my birthday.  The other main print is a cream, flowery cotton I bought at Joanns, with a hint of plum; I found it in my stash, and immediately had to use it in a quilt.

Sometimes that’s how it goes, like getting the idea for a novel.  You just run with it, and not worry where it will take you.

This is a rather busy quilt, but it’s mine, and I like it.  (I could easily say that about The Hawk, hmmm.  I wonder what that means.)  It’s twelve by fifteen four-inch squares, with speckles of squares from past projects.  I also like to do that, as if I’m incorporating other quilts within what I’m currently creating.  I want to quilt this more thoroughly than most of my previous projects, so I’m eager to finish this part of the process.  I’m sure my daughter feels the same about her situation, but we have to wait, allowing these things to take their own sweet time.

I still need to sew the binding together, but at least the pieces are in place.

I still need to sew the binding together, but at least the pieces are in place.

As for my dad….  He and Mom went to breakfast on Sunday, which was a vast improvement compared to when I saw him last week; he was as sick as I have yet to see him.  There’s no plausible explanation, other than cancer sucks and chemotherapy has drawbacks, sometimes severe.  Just as there is nothing I can do to speed along these last weeks of my daughter’s pregnancy, I can’t heal my dad.  It’s a slightly helpless sensation.

So instead, I’ll sew.  And write, don’t forget the writing.  And amid those tasks, I pray.  And tomorrow is another day….

Where do I go from here?

So, in the last few days, I’ve made two small quilts, watched plenty of football, chatted with my dad, enjoyed copious amounts of music, plotted out fabrics for future comforters, and made a long list of necessary cleaning.  Today will be full of mopping and vacuuming, but thankfully the writing has already occurred.  For, in addition to noted above, I’ve also added over six thousands words to The Hawk.

And honestly, right next to my husband’s beloved Green Bay Packers advancing to the NFC championship game, managing two chapters’ worth of words is the highlight of my weekend.  Hearing my dad’s chipper voice was also a godsend, but it’s tempered by how he’s achieving that upbeat mood; Dad’s taking a lot of painkillers these days, the late effects of Taxotere not easy to beat.  But at this point, all I want for my father is to be comfortable.  I can further a novel from my own processes.  As for my dad, all I can do is pray and wait.

I don’t know if The Storm Warning was tied into my father’s health, or that once again I’d be pounding on a keyboard, stirring fictional drama.  Thankfully the finished quilts carry far less angst; they are for my youngest, one of which she is fully aware, the other a surprise.  We abuelas have a trick or two up our sleeves, and not all those secrets are novel-based.  Although, some of these fabrics hearken back to my childhood favourite, Babar the Elephant.  The surprise quilt is one of nostalgia, which over the years will turn into memories as I read Babar to little ones, who will grow with the idea that an elephant in a green suit is nothing over which to worry.

Other storms will arise, but wise kingly pachyderms always soothe.

The quilt of which my daughter knows is one for which she helped choose the fabrics.  This was months ago, when Dad felt he had another twenty-five years, right after my daughter learned she was expecting a boy.  Yes, baseball season was in full swing (pun intended), so this little blanket owns a strong autumnal sense, couple with her choice of a woodland theme.  Hedgehogs were a staple of her English childhood, alongside a green-suited elephant.  How that will evolve for her impending offspring will be a joy to discover, which I am greatly anticipating.  It’s not just the novel that’s back on track, but grandmotherhood is knocking on the door, and while I’ve had a small taste of it with Master Z, it’s not entirely the same as what is approaching with my own daughters’ bundles of joy.

It’s like experiencing my dad’s illness from where I stand, fully outside all he endures.  I can ponder his health till the cows come home, but only he can live it.  I can’t explain it better than that.  Yes, I am a grandmother of sorts.  But I’m not yet an abuela.

Still, I’m preparing in the best ways I know how, sewing up a storm, squeezing in the words now that muse is back.  How it returned and why, I won’t question.  I’m simply grateful for the scenes that spill from my fingers, furthering this story.  At least I am in somewhat control over The Hawk.

But not completely in charge, which is probably good.  Soon my life will be dictated by a small new person, who won’t understand Babar and baseball for a few years.  But that little chap will be wrapped in love, via arms and quilts and gentle kisses.  This is the way love is passed, through contact and stories.  I don’t have any sort of road map for it, but that’s all right.  I don’t possess more than an inkling about how The Hawk will end, yet day by day, chapter by chapter, I’m getting there.

It’s like sewing a quilt, or any other metaphor for life; one square, one word, one day at a time…