Monday, July 16, 2012

The call

Normally I love hearing my brother's voice.  It is not often he calls.  In fact, I'm sure us siblings don't call each other nearly enough.  

We have quite separate lives in separate parts of the 'world'. 
When my brother called, I shamelessly let it go to the answereing machine without getting up and looking to see who had called.  I was tired and just got off from two 12 hours shifts that ran 8pm to 8am.

But when I heard his voice, I jumped up and ran to the other room.
As my hand reached for the phone, he began to leave a message.
'Call me at...when you get this message.'
The tone of his voice said he was not calling with good news.
The last time he had 'that tone' he had called to tell me of our father's death.
I grabbed the phone quickly.

At first I apologized for letting it go to 'message' and then we shared some small talk.  Then he gave me the bad news.  It was bad.
After more than 10 years of being declared cancer free, my sister had gotten the news that IT was back.

When I spoke to her on the phone, I felt quite strange.  What does one say to comfort another person with such bad news?
There are no true words to offer.  She told me there would be testing, but yes, IT was definitely back.  
I wish I could reach out and take some of the pain of not knowing away.  I know that is stupid and that I can't do it.  I wish a lot ...and spend my idle time thinking.  Wishes don't make things better.

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