This summer hasn't exactly been the greatest summer of my life. My ninety year old mother had to be moved quickly into my brother's house and we have been coming to grips with a life that will be ending sooner than later. Others in our family have been dealing with equally life changing issues and it has brought me to the following realization:
No matter where we are on the timeline, there is no rewind button.
As I watch my children growing, I am flooded with memories of myself at their ages (23 and 14). At 14 I was in high school, dealing with acne and boys and Algebra. At 23 I was working for a living, dealing with boys and acne and COBOL. No matter how old I get those memories are just as vivid now as they were then.
Which brings me to our recent loss, an employee of more than 12 years succumbed to rapidly advancing cancer. He was diagnosed on 2/15/11 and died 7/3/11. While I have known and seen many people go through various forms of cancer, this was the fastest downhill slide I have ever personally witnessed. And the real bummer... this was a wonderful man.
A true Christian, devoted to his church and his family. A good man on all accounts, but mortal, just like the rest of us. But the peace he and his wife exhibited during that last month was unlike most. With the security of knowing they would meet each other again for eternity both husband and wife met death head up, unlike most of us who run kicking, screaming and bargaining with God for more time.
If life had a rewind button here are a few days I would like to either relive as they were or have an option for a re-do:
1 - The day I spent extra time on the beach before driving home to Atlanta from Destin with first degree burns on my body. I then got stopped by the police 10 minutes from my home and almost got thrown in jail for being 'mouthy'. Of course my body temp was over 100 degrees! You be all nice and polite when your body is on fire.
2 - The night my dad died. My husband and I had gone out with friends and when the phone call came in the wee hours of the morning I didn't answer the first two times they called. It wouldn't have made any difference in terms of being there when he dies, but I wish we had gone to the hospital instead of going out. Wisdom though, only comes with age and experience.
3 - The birth of my son. I was too scared to enjoy the 'wonders of childbirth'. First children get the short end of the stick on this matter - their mothers aren't overprotective, just panicked they will do something wrong and their mother-in-law will get the chance to snark on them.
4 - My 48th birthday. My husband forgot my birthday.
5 - Our last family vacation. No explanation at this time required.
Unfortunately there isn't a rewind button, so all we can do is make the best of the days before is. Too much looking back isn't good for our futures.