“A Moments Wrest”, Chapter 3: Staring At The Sun
3 Staring At The Sun
Over several days, Sarah basically lived in a tiny curtained off square where her husband laid unconscious. She was able to spell off for only a handful of hours at a time to be with her son Aaron and grab a quick shower. Whenever she was away from the hospital, one of Oren’s parents would take over for her to sit with him. Absolutely no other visitors were allowed.
By this time, hospital staff had a slightly better outlook. They transferred him to another open curtained room in the Intensive Care Unit. The ICU staff were able to continue giving Oren constant observation, but without the inevitable chaos of the ER. Although there was little change in his condition, he did not get any worse. The swelling in his brain had reduced somewhat, but the trauma from the accident was far too serious to make any definitive predictions. “It is still too early to know”, the doctor reminded her almost daily.
Sarah managed surprisingly well. Her boss had given her an open door to come and go as she needed. She often brought her laptop with her to correspond with her team, answer emails or put out any fires that arose. She also kept in touch with family and their friends through text message and email. It was nice to know that so many people were thinking about them. Several also said they were praying for them.
She did not mind, even though Oren and Sarah were not religious people. They weren’t against faith, just never considered it important enough to fit into their already busy lives. Oren did grow up in a religious home, but as long as she knew him it had no noticeable influence on him. But she had to admit there was something comforting in knowing that if there was a God out there, people were putting a good word in for Oren.
For Sarah, this situation was difficult when Aaron was brought to the hospital to swap with Oren’s parents. He was well behaved enough and Aaron looked forward to seeing his Daddy even though he happened to be “habbing his nap” every time. He expected his Daddy to wake up and see him waiting there. It was as adorable as it was sad.
These little visits proved to be an unrelenting reminder of the uncertain family life before them. The doctors were now cautiously hopeful he would live, but the possibility of a normal life reduced with each passing day. She was silently preparing herself for a long road ahead. Whatever happens, it seemed more and more likely they would never have the life she dreamed of with Oren.
If she allowed herself to be honest, she would admit this dream had already been eroding away long before the accident. Things were different. Their relationship had changed over the last couple years. Those things were somewhat controllable, she reasoned, and reversible. But this coma was something different altogether. She had not prepared for something like this.
Sarah was also exhausted in every possible way. In the hospital, she was not “doing” anything, but it was sucking all the energy she had. The hospital staff brought in a small recliner chair for Sarah to lay on. Her sleep quality only marginally improved, but she was far more comfortable at least. She sat down again and pulled the side lever to lean back and extend the foot rest. She was relieved to close her eyes finally, hoping for a couple of undisturbed hours.
She fell asleep almost instantly.
The grey raincloud emptied itself into the ribbon and fell to the ground a great distance away. Soon after, the sky was entirely blue again. Oren continued staring at it before sitting back down in the sand. There was no one thought in his mind. There were many, fuzzy and scattered at best.
He looked out over the water again. His eyes eventually fell to the little pools of water left by his feet earlier that morning. Earlier? Who knows what time it actually is, he thought as he looked up at the sun. He tried to make a mental measurement between the top of the tree line and where the sun seemed to be stuck. He studied that spot for a while, looking for any sign of change. His brain tricked him a couple of times. But the sun had not moved.
“You cannot stay here”
Oren shrieked and spun back in the direction of the voice. There was nobody there. His eyes scanned the grouping of trees almost a hundred yards behind where he was sitting. It sounded like it spoke from right behind his head. Yet the sand before him was still undisturbed Nothing could have gotten that close.
“Hello…”, Oren stammered finally, “Is anyone there?”. There was no answer. Nothing moved or made a sound. He tried again.
“I’m sorry, but I did not catch that”, he tried to sound accommodating. “Do you mind repeating?”
He questioned if he heard anything at all. Could it all be in his head? Embarrassed, he brushed himself off before sitting back in his spot again. He remained agitated for a while, still very much aware of the trees behind him. Soon, the beauty in front of him melted his unease.
Oren closed his eyes and focused on the hypnotic rhythm of the waves on the beach. The sound eventually became the cadence of a song in his mind. Not his mind actually; some other place.
It started as a tune he knew well, a forgotten favourite from his younger years. It then turned into something different and became unfamiliar, but still wonderful. It soothed him, and he began to forget what happened.
As he laid backward in the sand, succumbing to sleep, there was a crescendo in the music. Had he been more alert, he might have heard the rustle of a small set of wings that pushed into the sky. They just happened to flap in perfect rhythm with the song until it faded into the wind.
…continued with Chapter 4