Monday, April 5, 2010
HORRIBLE THINGS: WONDERFUL PEOPLE
While we were taking a long road trip to spend some precious time with great friends, nature illustrated our path with rolling fields of Bluebonnets, Indian Paintbrushes and coordinating blooms. Traveling over the winding hills, it became evident why "Texas Hill Country" has earned its reputation of THE PLACE to live or at least visit. It didn't matter how rocky, cactus-laden, or isolated the land, quilts of red, blue, yellow and white flowers covered the craggy hills. What a wonderful addition to our trip these flowery blankets provided.
Our journey took us to our friends' beautiful home, which has a scenic walkway to get us closer to the waterfall in the nearby creek. Sitting on the deck, we talked about pets, children, grandchildren, work, retirement, nature and many other wonderful topics. What didn't deserve much conversation was the reality of the merciless tentacles of cancer which has begun its final strangling hold. Cancer has been fought back for a few years and yet this time the relentless hold has been ruthless and relentless. Cancer markers are indicating that this might be the final treatment cycle.
When I looked at our friends, I saw the everlasting love between the two and the desperation that is barely under the surface. During lunch, quick, tender touches were unconsciously exchanged. Our friend's energy was non-existent and yet she insisted that she was up for company. Lunch for her was quiet and consisted of a couple bites of soup. She didn't want to be a drag on our visit, but yet we could tell that pushing through the visit was draining on her.
After lunch, we drove around the hills and marveled at the architectural marvels clinging to the sides of the cliffs. Returning to their home, the two guys went for a walk around their land and had a discussion concerning the obvious near future. Tough talk for two guys who have centers of love, compassion and loyalty. While they were gone, we enjoyed the soft breezes; discussed family matters, chemo treatments; cancer markers ("mine haven't been too good lately"); and brave fronts of those we love. Never did we discuss what will happen when the monster's hold can't be fought back any longer. I fear that it won't be much longer and I am angry that such a wonderful, humorous, intelligent, kind, giving person should have been turned into a frail, weak, pale, stubble-headed, dull-eyed ghost of her former self.
Hugs and promises of quick returns sent us off down the hills. We hadn't made it to the main road before tears of sorrow crept out from under my sunglasses. My heart was heavy as my husband and I discussed our roles in helping our friends journey through this part of life.
Questions ricocheted throughout the car concerning God turning a deaf ear on the prayers sent for healing. Why would God not heal this remarkable woman and ease this family's pain? If God is all powerful, why won't God bring this fantastic woman back from the precipice of death?
All questions for which we had no answers, so we just know that when we are needed, we will be there at our friends' beck and call.