A bittersweet scent of melancholy wafted through my screen door today, reminding me that the waning days of summer are upon us. In less than five days August will bow to September, catapulting us forward whether we’re ready to let go or not. I am not. I know in my heart that there will never again be an August quite like this one, a serenely simple month all wrapped up in the magic of Mom’s miraculous recovery. Still, her dance partner these days has been a formidable force, a brute really, as cancer usually is. She hasn’t gotten her toes stepped on yet, but it appears inevitable. Today I made the mistake of looking at the calendar, and in an instant a quiet despair fell over me. Already I can feel August, prying my fingers from its seductively warm embrace and pointing me in the direction of fall. Like a new teacher with outstretched arms coaxing my inner child into the classroom and away from my mother, September is beckoning, encouraging me to let go and keep walking. But what about her? Can this possibly be Mom’s last August? It is incomprehensible to me. I can’t begin to imagine life without her. My deepest fear resides in the knowledge that in letting go of August I will soon be forced to let go of her.