The call came in from my brother-in-law at 3 AM and jerked me awake. I knew what it probably was.
Earlier that day the Man had stopped in to see his father. Two months ago he and my sister-in-law moved Tatay down here to be cared for in the home of a caregiver. She was Filipino, she was great with him and they made him as comfortable as they could.
He turned 90 in December and we all gathered at a Japanese restaurant and I think he enjoyed it. We went to see him--the Man went often and three weeks ago he and I went together and spent the afternoon with Tay.
We've all know what was coming. "Palliative care" "Hospice care". The words were being used.
The truth is that when Nanay died, 3 1/2 years ago, he began to go away from us. She was the center of his world, and without that center, he began to diminish.
I've thought of him these last few years as waiting for God. His god, because I'm not a believer.
I wish I was. I wish I could believe that he and Nanay are together again, young and happy. That all the bad things in their lives are healed.
But I can't. I just can't.
All I can do is organize clothes for the girls for the funeral--it's Monday-- and support the Man and SC.
And cry. At the oddest moments, I find myself bursting into tears.
It's all horribly familiar. Not at all like when we lost Nanay, and yet still the same.
And I hate it.
And I fear that some day the phone will ring again at 3AM and it will be my mother calling. Or my father.