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photo by Sheri Dixon

Thursday, November 15, 2012

What If?

So Ward needs surgery. Again. "Just" oral surgery, but it'll be done at MD Anderson with their oral surgeons under general anesthesia and with our plastic surgeon on stand-by just in case something weird and unforeseen happens and yanking out all the roots that belonged to the teeth that broke out due to the aftereffects of radiation makes the graft that's sitting RIGHT THERE unhappy.

Now, we also need a good 5 days lead-time before surgery because he's on coumadin and has to be offa that because blood-thinner + yanking out tooth roots = "we're out of gauze- bring in the transfusion kit".

Last Friday we thought maybe by this Friday (as in tomorrow) he would be on the other side of that surgery.

But he's not. They haven't even scheduled it yet. Because everyone waits on everyone else for parts of the pre-surgical puzzle to be assembled and everyone passes the blame for how damn long it's taking to schedule an EMERGENCY surgery to everyone else.

Anyhoo.

Last Friday I had an Intensified Awareness Day.

These happen every so often in life.

It happens the first time your baby gets sick and the thought goes through your head over and over again in the dark bleakness of night while you're walking your infant around the silent house- "People die every day- and a lot of them are babies". Clutching your child just that much closer, you imprint everything about him into your soul- heft of his little body, aroma of the top of his head, the very sound of his breath.

It happens when you're assaulted with the incomprehensible beauty of something- be it an endless vista, a piece of artwork, a haunting melody or the flawless arrangement of letters forming an exquisite perfection of words. Whatever it is,you consciously press it into your memory as though flowers in a book, tiny palms into clay.

Last Friday I looked at Ward. Looked. At. Ward. While Alec was in co-op classes, we had lunch, and took a walk. We talked and held hands. Just like any other Friday.

And I realized how precious he is. How precious every minute and second with him is.

A lot of people's "what ifs" seem to revolve around daydreaming of things we think of as better than what we've got now-

"What if we won the lottery?"

"What if my book sells a million copies?"

"What if?"

Because of our actual history and my basic temperament, my "What ifs" are a little different.

Specifically, last Friday when I thought THIS Friday we'd be on the other side of yet another surgery.

"What if this is my last Friday with Ward?"

I was simultaneously terrified to abstraction and insane with the remembering of every detail. It was exhausting.

Since then we've talked about it, and as always he's reassured me that he's not going anywhere.

Because we've got so much to do yet and a boy to raise up yet and he promised me he's not going anywhere.

And I believe him.

Because no matter what it looks like from the outside, the one with endless massive strength and courage in the couple who is Us is not me.

Thanks for sticking around, Gomez. I love you.







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