At 2:05 AM, just about 15 minutes ago, my sister called after receiving word from the nursing home that Mother’s condition has greatly deteriorated.
For the past three weeks it has been touch and go.
We’ve known there is no hope for a full recovery; the cancer has ravaged her body. We’ve only desired Mother be comfortable and without pain.
Mother orchestrated this “eleventh hour” transition as smoothly as some of my favorite theatre composers would, building up to the final moment before the curtain lowers on the finest musical.
We knew, from early on in life, that this moment would someday arrive. As our great-grandparents and grandparents died, moving our Mother, and us, closer to the curtain’s fall, it still seemed this moment would remain suspended for a long while.
However, as with any great musical production, we move quickly through each scene and act, seldom checking the time.
Perhaps we ignore the time because we don’t want the show to end.
My sister just texted that Mother’s BP is 77/44 and there are ten respirations per minute.
While Mother’s pulse winds down, ours accelerate.
As the curtain lowers on Mother’s grand production, my sister and I each step into our own second acts.
This is life.
One scene moves into the other for each act. Eventually, the curtain will lower.
But the music… the music will never truly end.