Hiatus – Day 3.5


I don’t know if this ever happens to anyone else, but often times, without rhyme or reason, a movie will fall into my lap that speaks so entirely well to my life at that moment.

For instance, I had gone by myself to see the film Lion, staring Dev Patel and Nicole Kidman. A film about a young man trying to come to terms with his own adoption. Him dealing with the isolation his feelings bring him. Feelings that people can sympathize with, but will never truly be able to understand. And his need to find his birth mother. At that time in my life, almost exactly, I had begun to feel the same way about my own adoption..

Today, my mother and I went to see the film The Big Sick, staring Kumail Nanjiani. Intended as a comedy, but we both knew it had some serious themes. 

If you haven’t seen it (and you should) be prepared for spoilers..

Nanjiani, a Pakistani-American battles the traditions and expectations of his family, and his feelings for an all American girl. She becomes terminally ill, and he is thrown headlong into her life, when her parents arrive. But where this movie struck home was, the aggressive nature of her illness. She goes to the E.R. for simply passing out, and shortly there-after she is put into a medically induced coma. Her infection, unknown in nature, quickly travels from her lungs, to her kidneys, and then to her heart. It is terrifying in its swiftness…

Tomorrow, my parents and I had plans to take the day, to travel across the channel, and visit some family friends. Old family friends from when I was a child. One daughter, my age, the other, just a couple years older, and currently battling extremely rare, extremely aggressive cancer..

You see these things all the time, in movies, on tv, and you always think, “these kinds of things don’t happen to people like us.” And then they do… and here we are…

Hiatus – Day 3

Blueberries for Sal…

There is something to a life of relaxation. Living each day at your own pace, and watching everyone else race past. We rise with great ambitions for the day. Donning shoes, and strolling down the hill, buckets in hand. Under an archway, and into an eden. There is the smell of seawater and ripe berries, the sun baking them on their vines, and somewhere the gentle notes of folk tunes. The real poetry is in the picking. The cris-crossed vines laden with juicy reward, covered in thorns, poking and tearing at skin each time you reach in. The poetry is in the danger, the pain, and yet we still press forward.

And I am reminded of two young girls, spending time in an apartment just off the highway. Keeping themselves occupied by catching bugs and throwing them out the second story window in home-made capsules with parachutes, then racing outside to gauge the bug survival rate. I am reminded of them ducking under the wire fence next door, and merrily plucking at the raspberries. Careful of the thorns and spiders. And playing as ignorant children when the owner began yelling at them.

Lola is happy to be anywhere we are. My ill-chosen shoes fight gravity as I attempt the bush on the hill, trying desperately to not reach out and grab a handful of thorns, nor fall face-first into those thorns. Lola barrels under leaves and thru the vines, settling into a shaded spot square in the middle of the bush. She starts out by rescuing the berries I fail to catch, then digging holes, perhaps offering some sort of burial to them, but simply kicking dirt onto my feet. She runs happily, up and down the hill, as our buckets grow full. Until the sun reaches its peak, chasing moisture down our brows and necks. And when it begins to feel like work, we trudge back up the hill, and drive home, our buckets full and our fingers red.