Thursday, January 05, 2017
Today I am grateful for un-decorating. When I spoke with my sister yesterday and earlier in the day today, my mom was in grim shape. She barely eats a thing, refuses to sit in a chair because of exhaustion and weakness, had to have oxygen and an IV again because she had breathing problems and won’t drink. I am a walking yin-yang of emotions these days. I’m fire and ice. I’m water and earth. I’m air and total suffocation. Mostly suffocation. So I started ripping the decorations down.
I love decorating, but it’s soooo much easier to tear down. Especially when you are angry and afraid. . .not necessarily in that order. I am venting some frustrations on those poor decorations. Beating them into submission. Hollering at them because I need to holler at someone and Jesus, Mary and Joseph can take it. They promised.
When someone appears to have given up on life, it is very difficult to know what to wish for. Himself and I don’t know if we should hop in the car and drive through the impending blizzards, or sit tight and play the waiting game. So we’re waiting. A little. I think. Can we live with whatever decision we make? How can we know what mom really wants when she has gone silent? Yes, silent. Two words to my sister in as many hours. I want some answers. Could someone please give me the answers? I’m waiting. Go ahead. . .um. . .still waiting. . .
So as I yank down a piece of cheap garland, made beautiful by bows and lights, I pray that whatever happens, mom won’t have to suffer. I shove the purple-velvet and red-fur, stuffed bustier ornament she got me when she was a “red hatter” in Arizona, in the box and wonder if mom will still be here next year when I take it out again. And I wonder how I’ll get through it if she isn’t. Or is. And is still so unhappy.
I rip and yank and tug and unwind and throw away and re-packed and I still have tons to do, but I take the process as a metaphor for life. No matter how deeply we pack stuff, it’s still there, maybe tucked in tissue or hiding in tinsel rope, where it is safe, but still there. Just like emotions tangled in regrets and should-haves.
By the time I was in the basement labeling and restacking and giving instructions to Himself as to which boxes need to come up next, my sister called. Mom is safely in a rehab facility. Willow, in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. My sister was talking with someone about bringing more things to the room to make mom feel at home and they said to her, “Don’t bring too much. She won’t be here that long.” My heart sank before my sister went on. “Based on how easily she got out of the chair, she’s doing pretty good and might be able to go home sooner than you think.” Yin-Yang-Zap! What? And if she does, then what? My emotions are hanging from a bridge, on a bungie jump that won’t stop flailing and I’m getting the vertigo barfs! Would home be the right thing? The best thing? The worst thing? The only thing?
Should I be happy or guarded? Um. . .I’m still waiting for those answers. Feel free to hop right in here. If I miss a few days of posting, I hope you will understand that it’s difficult to even put words together, as you can tell by the above jumbles.
But I do wonder. . . If we think we have all we want, or have done all we wanted to do, at the end is there always more we long for. . .always something else we wish we could do. . .someplace to see. . .some music to hear. . . some song to sing. . .someone new to love. . .before life is snatched away? Too soon. Always too soon! I will be un-decorated in record time at this rate. . .yet. . .still. . . waiting. . .