I am back at home and symptoms are largely under control. I tend to sleep a lot so I didn't get around to writing much today.
The kids were happy to have me back at home, especially Aidan. He was so worried that I was never coming back. Aidan and I spoke a little bit about death today -- its permanence mostly -- and I assured him that he could still have a happy life even if that life does not include my physical presence. I tried to use a metaphor. I explained that there were two different ways we use to go to the mall, one using the highway and one using back roads. I told him to think about the mall as happiness (ok, so it's a very capitalistic metaphor) and that there are many roads to happiness. He may have to shift paths when I die or rely on someone, like his dad or his sister, to steady him along the way. "But you will find happiness again," I promised.
He did not find my metaphor convincing so I just let him sob in my lap. The poor little guy is so consumed with my death, but he seems to be open about it with his friends and teachers. His teacher visited me tonight and told me how open he is with her and his classmates about my illness and hospitalization. I was so glad to hear that he is reaching out to others in his own way and that he has some really marvelous friends to depend on. Their 7-year old hearts seem very big! And we are blessed to have teachers who are so dedicated to shepherding both Amelia and Aidan through this difficult time.
In some ways its a privilege to die slowly. We have had so much time to adjust and prepare. Our friends, family, and neighbors have proven themselves to be a band of saints with seemingly bottomless wells of generosity, love, and kindness. Because of all these wonderful people I feel confident that Bill, Amelia and Aidan will not only survive my death but thrive despite it.
In some weird way I feel lucky.