I went over to my mom's this evening to meet a woman to sign a binder on her place.
I am the Executrix. I love the way that sounds... it makes me want to wear leather and furry handcuffs.
The contract has Hubbard clause because this woman needs to sell her place first.
I like her. She's a nurse, like mom. I hope she gets it.
But I was early. And I started to wander around.
And it started to get hard.
On the counter I found a tape and a player that my sister in law had left out for my brother to listen to. It was a tape from one of the many visits to one of my mothers many doctors. Sometimes, randomly she would bring along this little cassette recorder, because sometimes she didn't remember what the doctors told her.
I don't think she ever listened to any of the tapes after the appointments.
My sister in law set it out so we could hear her voice again.
This appointment was with a surgeon from Yale. One of the best. He specialized in difficult cases. She visited him a couple times. This visit was shortly after a year on chemo, and a few months before her death. On this tape I heard him tell her that she was still inoperable. That damned tumor was still sitting right on her vena cava. A major artery. And this position is what made surgery out of the question.
But - he told her all was not bad. The chemo was shrinking her tumor. I heard her voice add that indeed her markers were down.
This was all good news. Reason for hope. He advised perhaps some radiation.
Don't rule that out.
You look good he remarked.
Stay positive. And by all means keep in touch, he told her.
He was lovely... this surgeon, with a delightful British accent and a gentle European way. He was so soothing, and confident, and gave her that knowledgeable hope - that she would only take from the best doctors.
He assured her. Even though he could not help her.
I was with her at this appointment. Sitting right next to her. I believe I was holding the little cassette recorder.
I heard the hope, along with the subtleties of fear in her voice on that tape.
I don't remember hearing that when we were there.