Autumn

Autumn

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Just Stuff

Our hickory tree sheds its yellow leaves and it's warm here, fog rolls off the river like smoke and I've a headache, so there.

The television streams soft music. Herself roams room to room in search of lost sweaters. She hid them last year and now wants them restored to her deeply packed walk-in closet - an area most inaccessible because the clutter of shoe boxes and miscellaneous stuff bars the door, and above all hangs three of my rifles on homemade pegs. I'm sneaky that way...headache and all.

I just came back inside from a task in the garage. I thought if I puttered around out there this pain would vanish. What a joke of an idea. So, I continue to suck down ice water and wait.

Late yesterday, in southern Georgia, I held children, sweet little boogers, and accepted their kisses and hugs, and for the first time in months felt love and warmth. Nieces and nephews are worth their weight in gold. Their grandmother, my baby sister, has cancer. Stage four. Even so she smiled and glowed in their warmth. She is so frail.

I tried to stay outdoors with the other men. 

Like country boys everywhere, we talked, smoked, and told grand lies. It was nice under the clear sky of stars and cool wind. I did try and listen. But with the trees and moss and the faint scent of wood smoke and the whistle of trains, I was just too damn distracted to listen to stories of missed shots and local sightings of turkey and deer. There were endless questions of, 'Is this a good caliber for deer,' or 'Stephen what is this rifle worth.'

I'm sick of it. All of it. My soul needs a vacation.

Hence, my four month absence from this blog. And, yours.

*****

The text came late Christmas night. It read in part, 'Thank you for their Christmas gifts. This is killing me too, so I think we'll try and find a local park for a visit. I want my children to know their grandmother again....if it's okay with you...'

As per the norm of the last three years we'd bagged the grandchildren's gifts, drove to their home and I slipped from the car and, like a thief in the night, sat the bag on their front porch. I knocked and we drove away. Sad to our bones.

The text gave hope.

I told her, "Do it."

We wait. If it happens I'll stand in the background and pray.


Stephen

33 comments:

  1. Oh, Stephen, you have so much on your plate. So sorry about your sister. Cancer is a bitch. There is no other word for it. Glad you all were able to spend some happy time together and hopefully you and Sweet Wife will see Little Bit soon. Prayers and hugs, always.

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    1. Thanks, Sweetheart. Cancer has killed many, if not most, of my mother's side of our family. It took her when she was forty-four years old. Thank you for the prayers and hugs.

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  2. Stephen and Sweet Wife,

    I surely understand and hope you take more time for yourself away from all the stress factors life throws our way. It's very hard dealing this disease called cancer. It touches every family in one way or another. Trust me, I know after my mom, dad, and sister were all diagnosed with it. It's good to see you back. I send hugs to both you and Sweet Wife, and will keep you and your family in my prayers.

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  3. Good Heavens, she has grown so much! Prayers to you all. My BIL is in the final stages of pancreatic cancer, and my Dad is just starting dialysis due to complete kidney failure, thus my lack of blogging. When I do have the time I don't have the desire.

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    1. Ah, that picture of Little Bit was taken many years ago...think she was about six. She'll turn ten next February. She's tall and thin, or was the last time I had a brief glimpse of her. Thanks, my good friend.

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  4. Awwww. I am sure they will come around and make the meeting. Grandparents are too convenient and useful a resource to give up in my opinion anyway :)

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  5. Stephen we all have missed your words of wisdom. Cancer is indeed a bitch. It has taken a friend and former co-worker, my sister in law and a friend of my dads. All happened this year.

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    1. Bubba, you've more wisdom in your little toe than I've ever held in my feeble noggin. Thanks, my good friend.

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  6. Life shouldn't be so hard. I think you will find many of us walk side by side with you. Our difficulties might not be the same but are there non the less. Be well my friend.



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  7. Prayers and good wishes that all those you love find comfort, healing and peace in the New Year and that you and sweet wife are able to gather Lil Bit back into your arms.

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    1. Thanks, Sweet Lady.....and may you too find peace and joy in the New Year.

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  8. If it's true that the Lord doesn't give us more than we can bear, then He sure must think you're a badass. I went for years without talking to Dad, and those lost years weigh heavy on me. I hope that they come to a reconciliation with you.

    Prayers for your sister.

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  9. Goodness......she's growing up, isn't she?

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    1. Indeed, she has...can't wait to give her a hug. Thanks, my friend.

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  10. Prayers and well wishes for you, Sweet Wife, your sister and family. I pray that the New Year will bring peace and joy to you all.

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    1. And the same for you, my friend. Thank you.

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  11. We walk with you in spirit, think about you and your sweet wife often and pray for you both daily.

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  12. Nice to see a post from you, even with the cancer news, but also with a little bit of hope. Enjoy the short rest of the year.

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  13. I pray it happens. And what they all said about cancer; it took my dad in 2011. May God grant you peace, and rest, and may He refresh your spirit.

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    1. Thanks, my good friend....missed you.

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  14. I've missed you boss. Here's hoping everything works out the God intends for everyone's best. Praying for you and yours.

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    1. Thanks for the prayers, and missed you too.

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  15. The fact that this is still going on is incredibly heartbreaking. Found a picture the other day of the camping trip we all did, and the three kids were sitting on the steps of your trailer..so little, and so sweet. I know the wife has a lot to do with this, and one day she will have to answer for it.
    Give SW a hug from her ole friend.

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    1. I remember the trip well....hugs given. Thanks, Sweetheart.

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  16. It's been 3 1/2 years since I lost my 36 yr old son to cancer. Cancer is an evil thing. It kills the person who has it and kills a little piece of everyone they love. I am sorry it has come to your family. I am not familiar with your family issues, none of my business, I don't pray (consider it useless) but I wish you and your family the very best during these trying times.

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    1. I agree, cancer is evil indeed. I've presently two family members with stage four cancers. One is only thirty-two. Thanks, and hey, prayer doesn't hurt and many times its answered with such subtlety we seldom notice His grace. I too once doubted, but then He reached and lived my life more times than I can remember. Only afterwards did I realize answered prayers. Again, thank you.

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  17. Cancer is evil! My aunt is nearing her end with it now. Prayers for you and yours. I have missed you kind sir :-)

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