Wednesday, January 12, 2011


The air is slightly humid, skin a little sticky to the touch - yet a gentle breeze navigates its way through the wooden framed windows in this beautiful old attic room in Andrew's parents house. I feel like I am laying in a dream. The last five days since we arrived home have been muggy with the rain tapping its feet down occasionally. The rain spurts have been a welcome cleansing from the heat but also from the emotion of these days.

We took Abby and sat bedside with Nan on Friday and Saturday thinking each time she was always only hours from journeying on. Yet somehow her body would triumph each day. When we left on Saturday we told Nan, as we had the day before, that we would be back again with Abby tomorrow.

When Abby's temperature soared on Sunday we watched helplessly as our child was poked and prodded - blood tests, catheters, drips and lumber punches administered to determine what was wrong. Her screams curdled through the hospital hallways and still race through hallways of our minds. Maybe she has forgotten but we never will. 18 hours later she was cleared with only a virus and we were discharged. But how can we go home - when home right now is at Nan's side? We already broke our promise to return on Sunday as we were in hospital with Abby, but the fact that Nan is still holding on makes me question whether she is waiting for Abby?

We let Abby nap and then return to the hospital, amazed that Nan's body continues to persevere. She has had no food or water since Thursday night as she is unable to swallow after what the doctors believe may have been another small stroke.

The morphine keeps Nan comfortable and the family refuses to mourn at her bedside. A beautiful strength to witness and an honor to Nan. Instead they chat together, laughing, listening to music, talking to Nan - reliving fabulous memories of days gone by. We know Nan hears because every now and then she will chuckle a little, mumble a response or her eyes light up. What is it like to be in that place she is in at that time? I imagine it is like being in a glass room looking out, or down a long hallway - able to see us and hear us but just not able to communicate back the way she would want.

Over the days at her bedside we begin to learn a new language, to read the signs she gives and interpret them to the best of our ability. We hold Abby over her face frequently and Nan's eyes light up. What a gift it is to be in the presence of such a beautiful woman at this time of transition. Nan, is the type of grandmother we all would love. Loving, kind, funny, naughty, hilarious, fun, compassionate, gentle, accepting of all and with so much class - oh what a lady we all say. Oh what a lady.

On Monday night, after we had all gone Nan took her leave - her grand exit was made. Though in typical Nan style - it was discreet. As Judy, her daughter and my daughters Nan says, "She waited till we left that night. She would of thought it was rude to leave while the party was still going and in the company of others." - A True Lady.

May you rest or party in peace, love and joy. You live in our hearts and minds Nan. Give my beautiful son Sam a cuddle and kiss for me - I bet he was just waiting for a big hug and story time with you. What a gift that he now has you close. I miss him terribly but rest a little easier knowing you are with him now.

We Love You xoxo

1 comment:

  1. Pia - you are such a beautiful writer. My thoughts are with you, Andrew and your families during this difficult time. Thank you for sharing these stories. I look forward to following your blog. xoxo