Tuesday, February 10, 2009

February 8, 2009

These posts are from Saturday, when Art came home.

“I want daddy to go back to the hospital. I don’t want him here.”  Ezra said firmly.

Art had been home for 2 hours. 

I had just helped Art up from the chair and steadied him as he navigated with his walker to our bedroom. 

It was past Ezra’s bed time.  His mind gets lost when he is up past his bedtime.  

Ezra stomped away from me into the family room.  

I tried to follow him, to pick him up and hold him.

He refused all affection.

Then I yelled at him.

“Ezra” (he’s got a great getting mad name), you get back in here!  I cannot help you if you don’t tell me what the matter is. 

As he returned to the doorway, I dropped down on their bedroom floor, Pallas in the corner on her back with her legs over her head touching the floor.  Showing off the flexibility of youth.

I opened the figurative door. 

“I don’t know about you guys but I hate the way Daddy has to use the walker when he walks. I also really don’t like how slow he is.  It’s hard for me to see him like this.”  I said. 

I gave myself a silent pat on the back.  I felt like I said the right thing.

Ezra threw a pillow at me.  Right-thing feeling gone.

“Get your stories” I said firmly, in a desperate attempt to get him to bed. All he needs is sleep.  Mistaking my feelings for his. 

He stood at the book shelf crying.

It all suddenly converged then; the books, the 12 years of reading about child development, the numerous articles on the conflicted feelings kids have, even the advice from a well meaning but clueless childless friend.  It all converged and like a lightning strike I knew exactly where I needed to go.      

“You’re really mad at Daddy for being sick, aren’t you?” I said as I picked him up.  This time he went limp in my arms. 

“Let’s go see him so you can tell you how mad you are.”  He fought me gently reaching for a door jam as we walked the hallway to our bedroom where Art had just dozed off.   

I sat on the edge of the bed and gentle woke Art.  Ezra in my lap, holding tightly, his face turned away from his father.

“Honey,” I said, “Ezra is really mad at you for being sick.  He wants you to go back to the hospital. He doesn’t like you like this.” 

Art, in his tired voice, held steady.

“I’m sorry Ezra.” he said. “I don’t’ like being cancer sick either.” 

Ezra began to cry. 

“Ezra is scared to be mad at you. He doesn't know what to do with these feelings.”  I said.

“Ezra,” said Art, “You are doing the right thing.  Some of these feelings don't feel good, but it is still good to have them.”  He reached out his fatigued hand and started to caress Ezra’s knee. 

“I’m right here Ezra.  I look different, I know.  I walk differently, but I’m the same person. I’m right here” Art said, caressing his back. “and Ezra, I love you very, very much.”

Ezra began to sob. The deep, heart breaking sobs only a child is free enough to release.  The ones that make every parent cry. The ones that made me cry.  

“Can I have a hug?” asked Art.

Ezra went to him and sobbed his little heart out (sometimes cliches fit!). 

 Cancer is made up of these kind of horriwonderble moments.

 I want to scream in the sorrow of them and rejoice at the depth of tenderness.

Conflicted feelings.


Nobodies Perfect?

Great now I have deal with your nausea because you didn’t think that maybe you'd be nauseous in at home!

And now, you, my dear Kim, are behaving like an ungrateful bitch I think.

All I wanted was for him to come home. 

Now that’s he’s here all I can think about is all the things I have to do for him.

He can’t get up without assistance.

He can’t use the bathroom without help.

I have to bring him – food, something to drink, a book, put in a movie, a trash can lined with a garbage bag in case he vomits.

And if he does vomit, I have to clean it up.

I have to help him take his clothes off.

I have to help him get into bed.

I need to remember to put  the vitamin water, a book and the prego pops (the best non prescription anti nausea stuff around.) by his bed.

I have to give him Lovenox shots.

I have to smell that chemo/Art smell.

And now I am raging.  

Fuck you cancer. 

And fuck you chemo! 

Fuck you Art!


I am not grateful.  I am pissed off.

I am ashamed. 

Where is the peace? 

Where is the love?

Why can’t someone just give them to me? Why do I need to dig into myself to find it all?  I’m too fucking tired to find my cell phone charger, let alone find peace and love for this man. 

I stop.

I read this post.

I see that the peace 

was just here, 

just off to the left and below the rage.

I look closer, beneath the exhaustion and the immense worry that I will do something that will hurt him more.  

I see now that I will do anything for him.

I will rub moisturizer on his try now scaly skin.

I will put his socks on his feet.

I will feed him if I need to. 

I will do all those things

            sometimes in anger,

            sometimes in sadness

            sometimes in resignation. 

But always right below all that stuff, I do them in peace, in love and in awe of his willingness to fight the immense battle he wages within.    


February 10, 2009

Art was re-admitted to the hospital today, Tuesday. He passed out yesterday here at the house.  I managed (with the help of big strong neighbor) to get him to the cancer center.  As he was preparing to leave, sitting up and having his shoes put on him, he passed out again. 

They decided to keep him at the center over night and today, with still low blood pressure they decided to admit him.  

So where is up again?


  1. Anonymous9:50 PM

    Kim, Your strength inspires me and I am in awe of your family and determination. I cannot comprehend what you are facing but I can tell that you have the will to face anything with passion, love and honesty. I pray for you and Art and your beautiful children that one day this struggle will be over and you will realize the strength you have been given and the love you have truly embraced- In sickness and in health as a vow of a life together does not even cut it does it ? Please know you are thought of everyday.


  2. Anonymous11:36 AM

    to Kim, Art, Langston, Pallas and Ezra:
    Of course, all blessings and prayers to you. Peace and love, all those wishes.
    I am so happy for you, that you have family and friends rallying around. i am knocked out at your ability to find the "mot juste" when blogging. I fear writing you, because of all the clichés that would come out. They barely scratch the surface of the hurt. Thank you for you abject honesty. Power to y'all. Power.