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Reprieve!

August 8, 2013

The sun came back out this morning: Will is better! He’s almost like his old self today, whistling cheerfully, working on his model airplane, and he even laughed for the first time in what seems like ages. His fever and nausea are once again under control, and his pain is minimal…..what an incredible turnaround in only twelve hours!

Now, I know this may just be the calm before the storm, but what a joy it is to see him out walking the dog and enjoying the sun on his face. We’ve already had a great conversation full of positive thoughts; his determination to fight is renewed; and once again I am reminded that all we can do is take this thing one day at a time.

Yes, we still have to think about and plan for my life after him, but today death seems very far away, and in the meantime I continue to memorize as much about him as my mind can hold. The crinkly lines around his eyes indicating that he’s spent a lot of his life smiling. The funny way he burps. The vein in his forehead that pulsates when he’s angry (which is not very often). The way he whistles through his teeth like my father used to.

And I realize how very much in love I still am with this man, and how precious he is to me. I used to think that if worse came to worst, I’d do better without him than he would if the situation were reversed; I know better now. He has a degree of courage that I’ve badly underestimated, and now that the time has arrived to call on it, he is facing whatever the future holds with grace and dignity.

As hard as this is, I’m coming to see how fortunate we are to have this time of preparation. Every day, people die unexpectedly in car crashes and industrial accidents, from massive heart attacks and ruptured aneurysms, and from suicide; for their loved ones, there is no time for good-byes and “I love you”s. At least this way, we can draw strength from each other as life winds down and our time together grows shorter.

But today is a day to celebrate his reprieve: he feels well, he’s happy, and he just went to Subway to get us some sandwiches. 🙂

 

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