I have often wondered, how something ruined could be beautiful but of course they (those other folks), are referring to other types of ruins I guess, such as the Aztec cities, or Atlantis if you believe, and beautiful they were! I still find the two words to be in-congruent with each other. Having felt ruined the past three weeks, and not beautiful at all I feel closer somehow to the word than ever before…if a person can be close to a word that is. I seem to manage to feel close to words fair frequently. They come and they go but during their visit I feel privileged to share close proximity to their potential if used in my writing or other articles I read. I find myself looking for the word in newspapers and magazines sure it is being used a lot more than I realize or noticed before. And now I have rambled off on another track altogether.
Valentines day, early, early morning, 2am, the phone rings, and everyone knows, when your phone rings at that hour, it is rarely good. I was snoozing on the sofa, which has been the only comfortable place for me lately, and when it rang I propelled myself across the living room floor faster than I ever imagined possible, to answer it before it woke up Fred in the other room. “Hello?” “Hello?” two voices uttered into the phone wire. My flight across the floor was not enough to keep him from waking up. The call was from Harborview Hospital needing us to make a decision about a procedure to perform on my father-in-law that might keep him alive and maybe not. Having only about one and a half hours of sleep it felt way too much to ask my husband to decide such a thing without a little bit of waking up and discussion. I asked the doctor if they could kindly postpone an answer from us for a little so we would have time to think. He agreed and said they would call back when it became necessary to do it then and not later. With no boats leaving the Island for a few hours I tucked my hubby back in to get some sleep.
An hour passed, and then another. I was just thinking of waking him to get ready to go to Seattle when the phone rang again. This time the doctor asked me if we were in Seattle yet and I informed him of the boat situation and Fred being diabetic and needing to do his normal routine before we could leave etc., etc., when he told me that Tom had woke himself up enough and was in full control of his faculties to decide he wanted the procedure done even with the risks. That his situation had become even more critical and they needed to move him to ICU and try the minor operation to see if they could get his blood pressure to go up and stay up as it was barely pumping his heart at this point.
And here we are just getting dressed, only maybe 10 miles away as the crow flies but completely unable to get to his side any faster with the restraints an Island gives one. So hurriedly we dress and toss some food into Fred, walk out the trail and catch the first boat we could get on. I drive as I know Fred is upset, even if he is great at working around it, (much better than I am!), and to give him time to call his brother and whatever else needed doing. Finally we are arriving and Fred takes the van down into the garage. A few minutes later we walk to his father’s room and there are about 5 folks standing around his bed, they gently inform us that the procedure did not work and that Tom is close to dying.
We ask them to leave us alone with him and we hold his hands and stroke his face and mumble things in his ears hoping, just hoping he can hear us. We cry and hold each other and say more things. The nurse quietly comes in and checks his heart beat and says he is gone. She calls the doctor in and he checks again and calls the death, 8:22am, February 14, 2014. His job is done. He leaves the room. The nurse tells us to take all the time we need. We tell her his other son is on his way and to please send him in when he gets there.
We cry some more and hold each other and quietly talk about what is to come next as Fred is Co-Executor with his nephew. We decide to attempt to close Tom’s mouth as it is stuck open. Fred tries twice and it flops back open each time which causes us both to burst out in laughter. Yes laughter which seems so wrong considering but the nervous tension just bubbled up and over flowed that way. Obviously we could not get his mouth to stay shut. We told the nurse when she came in a little later and she explained why, which I honestly cannot remember her answer now, and we all got a chuckle again.
Mike showed up and we talked briefly then left to give him time alone with his father too. The rest of the day rolled by in a fog as did the next week. By day 5 we were completely immersed and up to our chins in estate work, probate, lawyers, funeral directors, more lawyers, tax accountants, home repair man, Government agencies, banks, and did I say lawyers? We have been working non-stop since then and we are only part way through this process but well on our way and soon will only have 2 lawyers instead of 3.
Today is the first day since then I actually have been able to do anything much that isn’t estate related. This whole process has caused my Fibromyalgia to flare up bad 2 times, but I have made it through. Fred is grieving gracefully which I am so happy he is able to do. Having his father to hang out with for a year and a half before he died was a blessing and managed to provide the time they both needed with each other to heal old hurts and relearn who each other is. I am grateful I was able to facilitate that happening by just not making a fuss when Fred spent time with his dad every few days and just let them immerse themselves in each other. I thank God and the Goddess for that gift for both Fred and myself and I know Tom is hanging out with his sweetheart now and I hope wearing that beautiful smile of his.
So yes it turns out those ruins are beautiful after all. Blessings to you all.