Monday, August 20, 2007

Life...looming over me like a vulture...

Life is weird.

I've recently been in touch with an old friend/boyfriend. The story regarding our "six degrees of separation" is weird enough, and I'm not going to go into it, so there's that.

At any rate, this guy has had his share of hassles in life and now he's staring down the big "C".


He had non-cancerous lesions on his pancreas, they got removed, and now the big "C" is back in his life and partying with his liver, one adrenal gland, and the aforementioned pancreas. He's only a year older than me...and while that's not exactly outside the realm of possibility it's still freaky to hear that someone my age is dealing with such a thing. He deals with all the aspects of his treatment well, finds things to laugh about, and is treating this as something that just...HAPPENS.

He's waiting to hear back from his doctors to find out the next steps in treatment...and then who knows? Who, indeed?

So when I start thinking about him, I start thinking about the general scheme of things from my vantage point in life.

I'm feelin' mortal, and scared as hell about it. I know those feelings of mortality are inevitable...but for God's sake, does it have to loom over me like a vulture? Seriously.

Thoughts of mortality also lead me to think about my grandparents - my dad's parents lived to be in their hundreds. Now, that's fine and dandy in some aspects...but those aspects don't always involve their quality of life.

"Gee, isn't it nice that your grandparents are still around?"

I would hear this sentence all the time when I was still living in Iowa.

Well,'d be nice if the circumstances were such that they KNEW who WE WERE at the end.

It would have been great if they'd known whether it was day or night, or whether it was the year 1940 or the year 2000.

It would have been nice if my grandparents hadn't been so stubborn about planning for their golden years and placing burdens on others that didn't need to be placed.

So nice as people thought it was that my grandparents lived to a ripe old age...I didn't think it was that nice. It would have been nicer if they had still known on a consistent basis who WE were...who THEY were...and WHERE they were. It would have been nice to not hear my grandmother swear like a sailor and call people names or shake her fist in anger.

So what does this have to do with my previous notes regarding my old friend from high school days?

I'm not sure, other than I hope and pray that as he goes through this journey he doesn't lose the sense of who he is.

I hope he knows who's around him...who's loving him and caring about him and his well-being.

I hope he can tell the difference between those who truly care and those who have ulterior motives that go against his well-being.

I hope I can be a friend to him without being scared of the illness and making both of us feel uncomfortable.

I also hope that I can handle it if these things don't happen.

I hate being a grown-up.