All in a Tuesday Morning
Concert on the Courtyard

When I try to think what to write to clear my head, I’ve found it hard to find the words.  The last few days have been a strange mix of everything. I need my emotions to resettle soon.

I think that last statement sums it up, actually.

I was so elated last week, watching Vernon seem to awaken so much at once, after such a long time of slipping downward. Suddenly it felt like anything was possible.  I was catching a new wave of hope.  I thought: “It’s OUR turn! We’re gonna grab the golden ring this round, I just know it!”

But then when Vernon was up to his old teeth-clenching, eye-closing, nonsense-saying tricks again during Saturday’s Dialysis session, my heart dropped and and never really floated back up. His eyes were wide open yesterday as he engaged in a semi-conversation, and today he was relatively relaxed again during Dialysis. I keep telling myself that if Vernon doesn’t get much better or suddenly takes a turn for the worse, I’ll be prepared. I won’t get my hopes too high and likewise, I won’t get too upset with the setbacks.  But you know…it doesn’t matter what I tell myself.  Either way, I’m not prepared—not when it actually happens. (I do believe, though, that the rebound is quicker with time.)

What is wrong with me? To be so movable in my emotions when Vernon has a surge of health and then has two bad hours that I got to see on a Saturday afternoon. I struggle with thoughts that I’ve become too co-dependent as a care-giver. I’m sure I was never this attached as merely his wife. Is this an identity issue? Am I thinking about it too much?

Or maybe….its just been a long time since I felt such hope.  Anything less just feels depressing now.

Proverbs says, “A hope deferred makes the heart sick.” I might add: A hope bounced around too much makes the heart woozy. As mentioned before, I’d like my emotions to resettle soon.

With manic-ish energy over the last week or so, partly because Vernon was showing so much improvement, I said YES to everything! I started checking things off my five page to-do list with abandon. Maki is due to come back this Wednesday, so I started getting his room ready (Thank you for helping, Sandy, you are a saint.) I didn’t dare start imagining Vernon coming home, but I did feel free to start a round of nesting, picking up where I left off in January. With Vernon doing better, I felt free to finally think about my home and how I might like to live in it. I replaced our bedding, which I’d been thinking was probably important. I picked up this totally-different-direction quilt at HomeGoods on a whim and since then have pretty much turned my bedroom upside down. I am much happier with it, honestly. Don’t write off the feng shui.

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It makes me think of my Nana, whom I adored. It also makes me feel like I’m creating a room for myself, which is interesting.  It’s not a sad thing. It’s not a bad thing. I feel more comfortable in it, not like I’m waiting for someone to return. Now its just me that needs to show up. I’m going to get a bookcase to put in there. Oh, to have books always around me. That will at least get me to bed earlier, which is a good thing!

Though its not like I really get my own room…Justine always finds her way back in to bed at at least one end of the day.

I also managed to get the office-space ready for Maki (and myself). We are getting there. I’ve yet to set up any of Vernon’s fancy computers (though I did take over his laptop.) Maki says he’ll help me with the heavy lifting when he gets back. I found an old poster in the garage. And thanks for leaving us such a great table, Vernon.

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I need to book with my therapist soon. There must be some important connection between someone getting better and another needing to settle their personal space. Unfortunately, I never went through the much-desired nesting/cleaning phase when I was pregnant, but I hear its a thing. I’ll take it whenever it comes.

All this is a good thing. But this blog is about mixed emotions…

At the same time, I’m struggling with the reality of sending Maki to high school and Justine to Kindergarten at the same time. It seems like such an important time for both of them. Or maybe it just was for me, and I’m projecting. They both seem very ready for it. In my honest heart, I feel like these kids are more ready for these next seasons than I ever was at their age. These kids are chomping at the bit.  Why shouldn’t they enjoy every minute and relish in the heartbreaks while they are at it?

I began Maki’s high school registration this morning without either Vernon or Maki. Strange, going to a high school campus again. Chills, right? I have a feeling every parent there was in an unspoken solidarity: none of us could look one another in the eye. And yet, the weird invisible parental pride was so thick, you could cut it in with a knife.

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Justine began gymnastics today. I knew she’d enjoy it, but I was surprised how obsessed she would be with it even after the class had ended. Her last words before bed: “I’m in pain. My body is in pain all over.” I bet! Doing stretches and tucks and jumps and leaps for 6 hours straight is a lot for a beginner of any age.

Here she is with Zephyr, one of her besties, who bounded through his first class alongside her.

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Life isn’t stopping. I’m settling in. Or else I’m just digging in my heels for the fight ahead. Maki is about to hit the airport tarmac running into high school and beyond. I’m only guessing whether Justine will be able to do a cartwheel before she enters Kindergarten. Both are a pretty big deal.

And Vernon…we’ll see what happens next. He is more than my hope for him. I’m not the one keeping him alive.

Emotions are real. But they don’t actually change anything.

“After all, tomorrow is another day.”

—Scarlett O’Hara

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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All in a Tuesday Morning
Concert on the Courtyard