Good Night, Strange Day

Life is strange. Garfield comic books strung all over the living room. Kids comparing the funniest funny they can find, belly laughing. On the floor beside them on his pillow is Shawnie, fentanyl patch in place, dying beside us.

No, they’re not hardened. A few minutes before, Mr. All Business gulping tears asked me where his body would go once he died. We were all crying then. Butterfly loudly asking silly questions, her noisy bounce across the floor – brother yelling at her “…just be quiet!!”. Life is just like this moment. A mixture of crazy funny and ripping pain. Closeness and irritation.

I didn’t like today one bit. Except for the heart to heart with a dear friend. And The Berenstain Bears on trampoline with Mr. Business and Butterfly in sunshine warm. Except for the swept floor smooth under bared feet. And laundry getting done, one load after another. Except for the coats being sorted out and parted with, the pile quite large of sleeves too short, the pile for sharing. I didn’t like today at all, but for the careful slow trip with Shawnie to and from the vet to get a pain patch in place for a hurting buddy. Today has not struck me as a day I’d like to re-do ever. Well, I wasn’t thinking of my willing, responsible College Girl taking cabin fevered Butterfly to swim lessons, managing all the details. Nor the chicken noodle soup warmed up second day – my boy’s stomach taking it perfectly, along with a bite of pear, Gatorade, popcorn… his stomach not complaining most of the day!! That part of the day was my favorite. Watching him eat, and then sit at ease without pain. I also liked the part where he and I plowed through a book needed for a report… a book on Nate Saint and the Auca Indians. I liked the silly face he made at me when I had the random urge to take his picture as he lay in bed, ready for a night’s sleep. That Jerry Lewis face he makes. I do want to see him make that face again.

The big picture of today was the dying of our precious dog that would never end, emotions running high, this mom wearing out. And here he is, home at last. Adored Husband walks over – I am given one of those “I love you” kisses. He scurries Miss Butterfly outside for helping as he mows the lawn… giving the rest of the family a quiet space to collect nerves for finishing this hard day well.

Pain and love, they swirl round each other. Good Night, Strange Day.

Amelia

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