Monday, October 24, 2005

When Reality (and Mortality) Slap You in the Face

I've been away for a while, and I was hoping that my first post would be good news. I was hoping to share a few thoughts on my vacation, or tell everyone how much I enjoyed the latest Pokémon event that took place in Chicago. But that wasn't meant to be. I'll write about those events some other time. Something else has come up, something far more serious.

My dear one visited his mother, Mollie* a few days ago. He was picking up a few books that she had given him. While he was there, she took the time to "unload", so to speak.

Her youngest son, Mitch*, is in the Army and serving in Iraq. Her mother's intuition tells her that he will return, safe. It's her middle child, David*, that she is worried about.

David has cancer. He was diagnosed last year with lymphoma. Chemotherapy has done nothing to stop or even slow the progression of the disease. Doctors have suggested a bone marrow transplant; I am unsure if David has found a donor, much less gone through the procedure. This week, he will visit the Mayo clinic and see if they can possibly halt its progression. Chances are, there is nothing that they can do for him.

The cancer has established itself on his kidneys. A tumor has wrapped itself around an artery, rending it inoperable.

David is dying.

Mollie knows this.

She believes that he will live long enough to see Christmas, but barring a miracle, it may very well be his last. Her intuition tells her that David will be gone by next summer.

Next summer, when the world is so beautiful and the trees are ripe in their glorious verdant splendor, my brother-in-law may be dead. He is only a few years younger than I and my beloved, but he will be gone much sooner than either of us.

In the day-to-day hustle and bustle of our lives, we forget that we are never guaranteed a tomorrow. We have no idea just how many years we will exist on this planet. It could be 2 years, 25 years or 102 years. We just don't know.

But we never think of this sobering fact; our lives here are fleeting, mere wisps compared to the age of our home planet and the vast universe that contains it. What is a few mere decades compared to hundreds of millions of years?

We don't like to think of death, of the ending of our lives, of our own mortality. But not thinking about it does not make it disappear. It is still there, lurking within the shadows.

I am saddened to think that the world shall awaken one day and David will not be a part of it. He will leave behind his mother and siblings, his two young daughters, his second wife and her children.

David is in his twenties.

Copyright 2005 Silverwynde. Do not use without permission.

Alone and broken,
we call to You
with prayers unanswered.

Alone and broken,
our tears flow

Alone and broken,
we bury our dead
and to You
we commit
their Spirits.

* Names changed to protect identities.

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