The Question is Not …

When Mary was diagnosed 
	with cancer, she was already Stage IV.

Do I understand her pain?   
	Of course not.
Do I understand her needs?
	Of course not.
Do I understand her anger?
	Of course not.

The question is not: “Do my efforts make any difference?”
	But rather is there anything more that I can do.
The question is not: “Does she appreciate my needs?”
	But rather do I understand our needs in the context of her reality.
The question is not: “Is her anger directed at me justified?”
	But rather what can I learn from whatever she says,
The question is not: “Is her anger just from chemotherapy and exhaustion?”
	But rather how can I ask questions at the best time.

The question is not: will I miss her?
	I already miss part of her -
		her penetrating analysis,
		her reluctant leadership in various groups.
			(She was always a slave of duty.)
	I miss her joy in playing the piano, the viola, the violin.
		Despite her exhaustion, she would help
			our grandson start on the violin. 
	I miss her critiques of my plans.
		(I'm 68, with MS, but I still try to contribute 
			to tikkun, to healing the world,.
		For anything that I can do in my various groups,
                        I'm grateful.)
	I miss discussions of what is happening in the world.
                        Is that selfish?

The question is not  … the one no one asks,
	partly because no doctor can or will answer it.
	Our constant companion (and everyone's) is almost palpably near.

The question is not love.
I love all that she was,
as well as all that she still is.
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One Response to The Question is Not …

  1. kenny woodson says:

    Jonh this is super awsome. i really appreciate you sharing.

    Like

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