Sunday, January 02, 2005

grace

today dawns with the sun lying gently on top of the trees. I’m sitting in whatever room I’m calling this – the parlor? the other living room? the main road is quiet and the temperature has dropped backed down to where it should be in January. Jack watches me from the window seat.

My rage and despair of the night before subsided yesterday as I drove to my parents house to visit my mother, an epiphany of sorts as I drove over the little bridge into Adamsville, that my reactions to this last stage of my parents lives were suddenly recognizable as the transformational stages of grief: denial, followed by anger, anger to sadness, to be followed eventually by grace and acceptance. I see, now, that it was my dam of anger that finally burst on new year’s eve, giving way to wave after swelling wave of deep sorrow that I have been holding at bay these last months. The task, as I see it now, is to make both of them comfortable, to suspend judgment, to love them as purely as I can.

My father is a few steps behind and may stay there. I thought that I should say to him, “we’ve got to accept that Mum is dying,” but when we got to the restaurant last night, which was mercifully empty and with JD nowhere in sight, he looked at me and said about the two of them, ‘we’re closer than we’ve ever been.’

Is it my job to take practical control or to accept that the way they are living now is the way that they want it to be? Is this facilitating their denial or helping them to live it out the way as they have a god-given right to do?


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