Ahhhhh, Death. Here we are you and I, best friends forever.
You’ve been at my side, loyal, steadfast, since the day I was born. You’ve mostly ridden on my shoulder, slightly behind me, where I couldn’t quite see you, but sometimes I could hear your stiff feathers rustle as you changed position during some particularly tumultuous rides. You trickster you, bringing me gifts, pearls, gems, and I never knew who was courting me!
I apologize, it took a long time to acknowledge you. You had to make a
big drama to get my attention. Cancer and all that surgery. I’ve always been stubborn. It was the hardest thing for me to submit, to let YOU be the decider! I’ll never forget that time when I was in my deepest exhaustion. I floated, rocking on a sea of ennui. I could do nothing more than lie there unmoving for months staring you in the eye.
Tee hee! You blinked first! Ha ha, made you blink! Even though I was too exhausted to do more than breathe, all my cells began to percolate with energy. I thought I’d done something pretty special, staring you down that time!
But now, you and I, we’re on equal footing, we always were, I just didn’t understand that. I think, I’m ready now. I look in the mirror, a wrinkled Bride, preparing to join you. I almost don’t recognize myself. All those wrinkles! I see you in the mirror over my shoulder and I chuckle; I rouge my cheeks, tracing the tear tracks, the crevasses of smile lines. Yes, I do recognize that face, those wrinkles, such beauty, so much living.
And there you are. Here I am. We
meet at the aisle. We’ve been dance partners since forever, it seems. I got my second chance, twenty years of knowing you, a long last dance, and it’s been good. The best time of my life.
We’re locked in each others’ arms now, for all eternity, forever in love.
I’m participating in an online writing group called One Story: Ten Facets with our facilitator, Jena Schwartz. She gives us a prompt each morning and we do free writes and post them in a secret FB group.
Today our prompt was Tell Me About Twenty Years From Now.
My first thought was, “I won’t be here in 20 years.” Although I’ve never accepted a prognosis, I do know that the type of cancer treatment I had shortens one’s expected lifespan by an average of 10 years. Ever the non-math major, I pondered the numbers for a few minutes… I’d always thought I’d be in my mid-eighties when I died, so with a ten years reduced lifespan – that would put me in my mid-seventies – and I’m in my mid-fifties now, so…..Oh!