17 November 2009
change of seasons.
I got back from walking Marzipan just now and realized that, overnight, our little Japanese Magnolia had let go its leaves. It felt sudden, even though it's autumn and that's what trees do. We planted this one the first year we lived here, I think, and it was barely a stick then. Now, it's full and bushy and puts up a fine display of flowers in the spring and green leaves in summer.
I spoke to my father this morning. For months, and in an accelerating way for the past two weeks, each of my parents' fathers have been declining. I am one of those lucky few who, at 28, still has all four grandparents living. They attended and spoke at my wedding; they have held and played with my two boys.
After updates on rushed one-last-time trips North and South for my parents, it seems like any minute now The Call, one of them anyway, will come. This morning my father told me Papi--my abuelo, his father--has stopped eating and getting out of bed. A few days ago he had been holding his own but at 93 and with cancers advancing, he is finally letting go. Shuffling off this mortal coil, as they say. My abuela, Mami, is with him and many of their children are, too. My father cannot be, but spent some good days with him last week.
I have a lot of complicated feelings, of course--mostly I want to remember these great men, always, and feel like they remain part of me, my children, our family.
I want to hold their hands one more time, but know I probably won't. It's hard.
Still, I remember our tree--and how even now, sleeping buds reach skyward.