Yesterday was the best Mesa Verde- Sunday in a long time, especially for Maki, who hadn’t had a decent conversation with his dad in at least a year. Despite Vernon’s complaints about constant pain in his right leg (our next area of attention?) he sat upright at the table for over an hour, talking with the kids as they drew pictures. Maki and Vernon spoke about superheroes and upcoming films. Maki said these were the kinds of conversations they used to have, whilst walking or driving together. I try, but I’ve never been very good at engaging in the subject for long, so I could see that this particular conversational cup of Maki’s was being filled at last.
When asked, Vernon said his favorite superhero was “the Thing.” Then he requested that Maki draw the character, to which he obliged.
The significance superheroes have for Vernon and Maki’s relationship runs deeper than I can explain. To give a short example though: Vernon got a tattoo of the Spiderman logo when Maki was about four. They were already sharing a connection over comics and cartoons, and Spiderman was their mutual favorite. In Vernon’s mind, the tattoo was a reminder of his connection to Maki, even though they were living in different countries at the time. The nurses happen upon it sometimes when they are tending to him. Joe tells me eyebrows are raised— they obviously want to ask, but aren’t allowed to.
Here are three of my own superheroes. Vernon is practicing his newfound powers: sitting up and the ability to drink milkshakes without coughing.
Bonus video: another visit from the Logies and Isabelle singing one of my favorite songs. She didn’t know, but Vernon spent many hours of his coma listening to Iron and Wine on repeat. In fact, I was so nervous waiting for him at the airport the first time he came to visit that I was listening on repeat as well. I love how Belle’s voice makes it special all over again.