27 October 2009

In The Quiet of The Night

October is nearing it's end. In some respects, the month has gone by quite fast. Though, at times, it seems as if October might never end.

Today, I determined that I really needed to get outside, with the hope that the riding mower would not fail me. I *just* mowed and bagged a plethora of lawn bags, heavy and laden with compacted leaves. The lawn was again carpeted and so I began to get the tractor out and with the objective of filling (at least) ten to fifteen bags. The beautiful, sunny days are waning, desperately holding on for another breath. As I mowed, I waved to the neighbors, pleased that I was wearing my sandals, soon to be forced into hibernation. When I got to the the back forty, I began to lament Malachy's absence. I really enjoyed watching him run around the yard with abandon. He would watch me as I mowed and I would check at which point he was in his roaming of the yard. He bounded about, untethered, and free to run and explore with abandon. I would call him and he would wag his tail and smile, walking toward me as I made another loop. I realized today how much I enjoyed watching him play in the yard while I was mowing, gardening, or hanging out with the kiddos. Okay, maybe I was a bit distracted and thus, this in the reason why I mowed over the large tree trunk in the front yard after a loop in the back. (I think we need a new blade as the mower began to sputter, eventually making the most unpleasant grinding sound). Nevertheless, this mundane fall task again reminded me of the *readjusted normalcy.* I delighted in Mal's company while I worked outside. I delighted even more in watching him be so happy.

So, I finished mowing. Well, the mower *finished*before I had completed the leaf pick-up. I came inside and cleaned up so Eamon and Emma and I could go out for our walk. I noticed the mail had come so went to retrieve it before we went to the trail. I opened up the autopsy/necropsy report from the U of M. There were medical terms that I did not understand, of course. But, I understood *enough* to understand that the cancer had riddled his body. His heart appeared to be the primary source of the tumor. I knew that the cancer had metastasized, but reading the report hit this fact home. I was amazed that this uncontrolled force was almost everywhere within him. I was also amazed that he did so remarkably well, given the seriousness of his illness. I wonder if he felt sick, tired, uncomfortable, or sad as he was not a complainer. Dr. F said he probably did not realize he had cancer until the last day of his life. I sincerely hope she is right. I hold onto her words.

I have looked back at my October posts, realizing that they have not changed in tone from October's beginning to end. I feel like I am working through this grief but become self critical that I am not working through the loss of Malachy as I *should.* Am I mourning his loss for too long a period? Am I perseverating on his absence? Would my grief flow as it has if I were in school, employed, or depression-free? Maybe so. Or, maybe I am working at it as I should. In my own way, as I know how, with all things considered.

The irony is that Malachy brought me much relief from the sometimes all-encompassing despair of depression. He mitigated it's severity. He lessened the anxiety. I now grieve his companionship but also long for his ability to unknowingly comfort.

I find the nights to be the most difficult. The house is quiet and all have gone to bed. Madeline is asleep in the corner for the evening. The nights allowed me to give Malachy undivided attention. I still enjoy my sweet Madeline's snuggling with all of my heart. I am grateful to have my time with her and give her undivided love. Yet, the nights are quieter. Too quiet. Too unsettling.

I have confidence that I will again write posts about all of the joy and silliness the day brings. I know that my life is filled with blessings and good fortune. (KNOCK ON WOOD). I have not lost sight of the wonder. Though, for now, I contemplate the business of grieving.

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