So we got the phone call today that the family has brought in hospice for our neighbor across the street. She's a woman in her late 40's/early 50's who's been living with the treatments and changes brought on by pancreatic cancer for the last couple of years. Two great kids, 18 and 20, at home. Husband who works hard and coaches in the community. Obviously the mother is down to her last few pages. Fucking cancer.
My wife and I heard the news just as I was strapping on my shoes to go out for an easy 20 miles or so this morning. The news made me feel heavy, and as I spun down the road on a familiar route I was thinking about my mother and the last days I spent with her while she was near the end of a struggle with cancer back in 2001. Such an intense experience to be with a person who is stepping out the door. Not so much sad, although there is that, but simply very full and weighted.
I can't recall a thing about my ride today. My computer recorded 25 miles, but my mind was on families and memories and the luck we have in getting to know one another, seeing a flag wave in the breeze, feeling our lungs pumping like bellows up a climb, and sweating against the warm, heavy August air.
Kids pulled in and out by the waves. Looking out to the horizon of the ocean. These are very cool things to be a part of.