Late afternoon hot chocolate will soon be just a memory.
Not quite yet, but soon.
I’ve been so good about eliminating sugar from my diet, but I must confess that this little indulgence is one I have allowed myself. It’s a comforting ritual, this late-in-the-day treat. It usually coincides with one of Scout’s meals. While I am preparing her dinner, I’m also heating up the milk, stirring in the chocolate and occasionally indulging in some marshmallows. After Scout’s needs are all sorted out, I carry my cup into the den, sit in my chair and slowly sip my hot chocolate.
It’s been there for me throughout the winter, through all the snow shoveling and ice chipping and roof raking. On days when Nor’easters were swirling and blowing all around the cottage, when snow was falling at an alarming rate, I took comfort in my guilty pleasure.
Some hot chocolate, some reading material, sometimes some music, sometimes quiet. Lovely.
I awoke at 5:30 this morning to the sound of Scout falling. Yesterday she had trouble getting up after a nap and fell a couple of times. I assume the same thing happened this morning. I ran downstairs and saw she was having difficulty walking. But once I let her outside and she walked around, she was okay. It’s hard to see this happening as it brings back memories of Riley’s struggles. I think her hind legs sometimes buckle when she first gets up after sleeping for a long time.
Sigh. This is very hard. My agile Border Collie is struggling.
My mom is also declining. Things have changed in the last few days. She was given a chest x-ray, but it’s clear, so no pneumonia. Her breathing, according to Meredith, is shallow. She doesn’t speak anymore. She sleeps most of the time and when she is awake, she stares blankly. No recognition of anyone. Both Meredith and I, and even my dad, feel that her transition is in the near future.
Her body has become her prison and she needs to be set free. Of that I am certain.
I now bring the phone into my bedroom at night. Just in case.
That these thoughts about my mother and Scout are constantly in my mind is obvious, I’m sure. They are never far away, hovering in the background as I move through the day, always ready to take over and make me stop in my tracks.
That’s where I am today.