I'm on my way to the hospital -- I wasn't planning on visiting my father until I'd rested for at least a week, but now everything has accelerated and he's incoherent and drugged out on pain medication and maybe dying very soon so I'm heading over to the hospital after just two days. Earlier I'd left a message with my mother, asking her and my sister to meet me in the lounge so that I could go into the room by myself. Before, my mother had argued about this, but after my sister arrived and told her not to try to control everything I guess, she'd relaxed about it. Although then I get a message on my cellphone while I'm in the car, my sister says there's someone there now on 24-hour watch who isn't allowed to leave the room.
I think of turning around, but I might as well go anyway since I'm almost there. I kind of feel like talking to my father anyway while he's passed out, although not with some random person sitting right there. When I get to the hospital, it takes a while to find the right building since it's all a big maze. Then I'm in the right building, snapping a few pictures for maybe a photo essay: the inside of the elevator, the bathroom that looks kind of like a jail cell which is the place from where I'm calling my mother again. Bathrooms are comforting -- even this one that looks like prison because of the metal sink, it's my own space right now once I've shut the door. I ask my mother if I have to walk by the room to get to the lounge, but no the lounge is right by the entrance.
I snap another photo, take a few deep breaths, and leave the bathroom. I go to the nurse's station: could you tell me where the lounge is? But it's right there -- only three uncomfortable chairs, my sister and my mother in two of them. My mother looks disheveled and distraught, and Lauren, my sister, looks very polished. Oh, this long hug with my mother, that is where I'm holding everything in my body, which is what my sister says to me later -- since it's something that I told her -- though she points it out in a different place, when the nurse is basically saying that my father is about to die, that all they can do now is give him pain medication since the cancer has spread everywhere and especially to his brain, which explains his disorientation. Lauren thinks I'm holding everything in at that point, which is maybe true though what's more notable to me is that this isn't a safe place for me to cry or anything like that, this place with my mother and sister who have not acknowledged my father's sexual abuse -- I mean, my mother completely denies everything, and has gotten much closer to him since I confronted him; my sister says she believes me and she believes him, but has never asked him anything about it.
Anyway, they go to get food and eventually I look briefly in on my father, who's passed out on a bed, his hair longer and grayer than I remember, face squared off from wasting though he looks vaguely relaxed. Back in the waiting room or the lounge they call it I guess, I feel kind of peaceful and exhausted. Later, I look in again -- this time my father's jaw is tighter, his features more angry like I remember them.