1/7/2018

Dear Stuart,

The Bills played their first playoff game in 17 years today. We lost. It's ok.

Growing up the Catholic faith believed in Purgatory, a place described to me in my middle school years as "a waiting room with no comfortable chairs. And it smells funny." It's the place you go after death to pay for your sins on Earth. After you serve your time, you'll probably go to Heaven.

I think the Church has since rescinded that belief, although I'm thinking more and more that perhaps that exists on Earth, and it's called old age. It's been miserable watching the torture my grandpa goes through just by living. There's a battle in every movement, every breath; every place on his body is sore, bloody, bruised, dry, cracked, stiff, weak, painful. Much of the day is spent peeing, trying to poop, or pooping a little bit. It's infuriating for him. He spends all his energy getting out of a chair (a process), walking to the bathroom (each step is slow and painful), lowering himself on the toilet and then trying to relieve himself. Three-fourths of the time he can't. Then, as he's washing his hands from the attempt, or just when he's fought his way back to his chair, he feels another urge. 

And this goes on all day and all night. 

Was it Sisyphus that rolled the ball up the hill, only to watch it come right back down and hit him? That was for eternity. My grandpa reminds me his comfort in knowing that one day "I will be relieved of all of this. It's the beauty of the natural order."

It's a strange and awkward fight to fight; fighting to be well but hoping to die. I don't know who to root for.

To always remember our health,

Emily