Hebrew language class last week: We are, as I've been writing about in my other blog, learning Hebrew by reading the story of the binding of Issac in Genesis 22. Our professor began the summer by talking about the story as a great narrative: the promise, the tension, the human effort to achieve the desired result, the apparent solution, the challenge, the final resolution. It IS a great narrative.
But we began with the promise: to Abraham and Sarah, of many descendants, as many as there are stars in the sky.
There will be no descendants for me, not through Chicago Son. Not through the tall young man whom I had once imagined teaching his children to play soccer on the beach. I think that if you had scanned my insides as that particular lecture began, you would have seen my stomach turn completely over, quite literally. At least that's how it felt, physically, in my gut. On the outside, I looked like a student taking notes. On the inside, I was on the verge of throwing up.
The whole month of June: God, Abraham, a son's life in the balance. Sarah, who never again speaks in the text as we know it, to either her husband or his God. Not really the most auspicious beginning for my study of Hebrew.
Today: a mammogram. Last August I had spent one of my last CPE mornings, as things wound down, scheduling all kinds of overdue medical appointments. I got one of them in before Chicago Son died, and then cancelled all the rest.
The technician today was lovely and did her job quickly and efficiently; only a couple of the scans were as painful as they all used to be. I'm sure she thought the tears clouding my eyes were the consequence of physical sensitivity; she dropped a couple of hints to the effect that I might make an effort to come back more regularly. I distracted myself by looked at the pictures: the high-def results are much more intriguing to the untrained eye than the old ones. But I don't have much interest in repeating the experience. All I could think about were the three children I nursed during years when it seemed that optimism was not unwaranted. One of them in particular.