For years, I have been talking around a family health situation that has occasionally (and then more frequently) taken my time and energy away from writing and my other calling.
I kept it vague because it wasn't my story.
She beat the odds on her initial prognosis, and several revisions after that. She kept living her life to the end, going to Disney World with her baby grandkids, a mobility scooter, and two tanks of oxygen
When she saw the trajectory of her illness, she decided she was going to get herself on the transplant list.
It was a long shot to a long shot.
I dreaded the day when things took a turn, and she was rejected.
The transplant team had concerns over her frailty, but when they told her she needed to demonstrate mobility, she summoned her will and got up and did their tests.
I wasn't there. In my head, it's a bit like Grandpa Joe with a golden ticket on the line.
Two of my mother's greatest hobbies these past five years or so were followers medical orders and defying medical expectations.
Then told my dad if he was wrong, she'd never know.
He gave her twelve hours.
Maybe that sounds callous if you don't know her, but I did it for her. Dad agreed.
The doctor revised his estimate from hour by hour to day by day.
She saw the picture. She heard all our messages.
And now that it's done, I don't know if it means I will be withdrawing for a bit or throwing myself into my work or what. Playing it by heart.
I had some trepidation about it, because of the thought that whatever was in it, it would always be the last thing she said to me.
So it was nice.
First time not up late anxious, waiting for news, etc. Not woken up by early morning updates or late night base-touching.