numb only goes so far

these days
oh, these days
as they go on and on I find myself
inhabiting a certain place
a numb middle ground of sorts

I go there feeling vulnerable,
too tender for the rawness of fear or even the
delicious elation of relief

I feel brave in this middle ground, I think
and yet I'm cowardly there, too

but I am under no illusions
I know it is a false place
a self-protective destination
that I cannot visit forever

indeed I feel it slipping, now
I feel reality and all its baggage
softly, but persistently
and I know I can't
really hide away, can't really
protect myself from pain and worry and
shouldn't deny myself
the lighter, sweet moments that slip in
from time to time

sometimes I ease myself in
piece by piece

take my mind, for example
it can wrap itself all around the dialogue with the doctors
find safe haven there discussing central lines and fluid boluses,
atrial fibrillation, acute interstitial pneumonia, creatinine, and platelets
it is well acquainted with the feel and smell of blue latex-free nitrile gloves, size medium
with the smell of the hallways, the elevators, the rooms
a mix of sanitizer and barrier ointment, alcohol wipes and worry
hope and sterile gauze and leaking chest tubes

it is, of course, my heart that forgets
the middle ground
it is my heart that goes bounding
into the room ahead of my body and
well before my mind
it leaps right up in bed with her
eyes wide open, it stares her in the face
seeking recognition in her eyes and in her heart
it picks up her hand and strokes my face with it as if
the gesture were her own

it tends and wipes with cloths
sometimes cool, sometimes warm
it kisses and whispers encouragements
it knows where I stand, truly
it sees my middle ground for the game it is
it acknowledges the vulnerability and that
I'm thisclose, always, to spilling over and under
and inside out

and I know
despite the game face and the
growing medical vocabulary
and the ability that gives me to
make sense out of things....

I know that when it
really, truly,
comes down to it
that it's the other
it's this big, sloppy, eyes-wide-open
heart of mine
that calls the shots


  1. You have quite a talent Amanda. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.

  2. Amanda~Still praying for your momma and all the rest.

  3. I am praying for your mother and you every single morning. Hang in there!

    1. thanks so much, Karen~ I am hanging!

  4. Thinking of you, your mother, and family. Praying, too. I can't imagine how hard this is.

    1. thank you, Molly~ we never imagined this road would go on for so long, but I'm hopeful that it's going to keep looking up day to day from here on out!

  5. This is so beautiful, Amanda. Sending love and light and hope and joy from Texas.

    1. thank you sweet friend~ love and light and hope and joy are all very much welcome here! xo

  6. Hugs to you, Amanda! You continue to be in my thoughts! xx

    1. thank you, Dawn! I hope you and yours have settled in well after the big move~


thanks for taking the time to read and comment~