You just never know

Today started off like any other day…I was easily annoyed at the snail’s pace my children moved at, too rushed to kiss Snoop goodbye, and dreading the day ahead because I am too backed up with work shit.  We had a diagnostic evaluation today on a rather difficult client, and I was smiling inside that I was the parent therapist rather than the child therapist because it would save me a little bit of writing when it was time to do the report.  My coworkers and I had our pre-eval meeting, and since the family was running a little late I had a few moments to stand around with L and bitch about the irritating things our husbands do. 

Fast forward about two minutes…I was back in the conference room with another therapist (J) and my boss (gay tortoise) when L walks in.  Normally very cynical and straight-faced, she was completely pale…tears streaming down her face with her cell phone in hand.  She managed to spit out “Have to leave…Steve collapsed during PT…at the ER…I’m sorry…” between sobs.  J and I were in shock, and I immediately switched to child thearpist mode…not exactly easy to shift gears like that, but I didn’t think twice.  Gay tortoise just sat there…almost oblivious…before saying, “I think maybe I’ll see if she’d like me to drive her.”  Granted, L was in a very shocked state of mind…but I knew that this was not what she would want, so I darted out to H’s office (who is also one of L’s closest friends) and told her what had happened and insist she get out to the parking lot and go with L.  She needed to have someone with her at a time like this, but the Retarded Tortoise is the last person she’d want around.  Ever. So H grabbed her purse and was out the door faster than I could say “call us with news.”

Within 5 minutes I was sitting in a treatment room, with my professional game-face disguising the internal panic and worry that was consuming me.  A few hours later, we broke for lunch and I got the update that Steve was alive.  He had a heart attack during his morning PT and was taken to the hospital “just in time.”  He had surgery, and will be in the hospital for a few days, but he’s alive.  L is a mess, but her husband is alive. 

He’s 40 years old.  And he was walking around with a ticking time-bomb in his chest.  His wife and I were laughing and making fun of his silly husband behaviors this morning.  And he could have been dead today…had he not been at the right time, at the right place, and had the medical intervention he did.  I’ve been really a mess today because of this.  Not just because of the reality, not just because my heart felt like it broke into a million pieces seeing L standing there like that.  But because it really made me realize…smack me in the face realize…how quickly life can change.  How fragile life really is.  L went from bitching about Steve putting laundry in the washing machine but never turning it on, to fearing she may never see him again in a matter of seconds. 

I don’t really have any profound things to say…a bigger “lesson” to be learned.  But perhaps tomorrow I’ll take the extra 1/2 a second to say “I love you” instead of “Where the hell are my sunglasses?” as I walk out the door.  Maybe I’ll return the missed call from my dad as soon as I see it, instead of thinking to myself  ‘today really sucked, I can just call him tomorrow.’  Maybe instead of being annoyed by my children when they whine for something at night, or request a specific t-shirt that isn’t clean, or ask for ‘just one more’ bedtime story–I’ll take a moment to remember that this life I have…the one that makes my head spin and my body ache…is perfect.  And it can be taken away in the blink of an eye. 

And now, after that emotional download…I’ll have a glass of wine.  And in honor of Steve, I’ll make it red…because it’s good for your heart. 

It is, right?

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8 Responses

  1. Scary….makes you think hard about a lot of things, huh?

    (Amanda) Sure does, babe. Thanks for letting me be alone in my head with this one. I love you!

  2. i treasure our friendship everyday. (just so you know) i love you to pieces bflmnop

    (Amanda) And I heart you, my dear.

  3. omg!!!! It really just makes you want to call everyone and tell them you love them, it really makes you think that whatever your going through, there is worse things that could happen!!! By the way, love you and our friendship:)

    (Amanda) I love you too, Stace!!!

  4. That sort of thing happens more often than I want to think about. I really hope your friend is okay and is released from the hospital soon. I have to go hug Hubs now.

    (Amanda) Thanks, Tara. He’s still in the hospital, and will be for a few days, but it looks as though things are going to be alright.

  5. Puts things in perspective!

    And yes….red wine is good for your heart….I hope.

    (Amanda) Assuming it is, my heart is in extremely good condition 😉

  6. Well huh i just got a call today that somone from my church passed away last night in his sleep, thankfully he was 90 years old, but he was mowing his grass yesterday and didnt wake up this morning.

    (Amanda) See? You really just never know…

  7. Very scary indeed. I’m glad that he was able to get help right away.

    Now that we’re in our 40s, we hear of this thing happening a lot; my hubs travels a lot for work (ie. eats out, doesn’t get as much exercise as he should (he tries to take good care of himself, but his work is not physical and with the two kids it’s hard to get to the gym in his free time). He’s always prided himself on how well he takes care of himself; but lately he’s said I can be a better wife, as in: don’t share a bottle of wine with him during the week, and don’t let him eat that second helping. Can’t believe my husband has asked me to nag him – don’t mind, if it’s all in the name of his health!

    And yes, red wine is good for your health. In moderation, of course;)

    (Amanda) You were asked to nag?!? I’d love that!

  8. Life is fragile and we should REMEMBER to live it to it’s fullest! It’s hard (day in and day out) to NOT focus on the monotony of it all…

    I’m glad he’s okay. I’m going to kiss my sleeping kids goodnight one more time tonight…

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