Saturday, March 18, 2017

Stand in the sun, breathe in the woods

Being in remission, I am gifted each day with limited pain. I take advantage. I stand just a little longer in the sun. Lose myself in the woods. Listen to Jim and the kids intentionally. Cancel less with my friends. 

We aren't guaranteed any time here. I could spend every moment questioning why I am here and my sister is not.

This year I turn 40. The year I was told I'd never see. 

My senior year my youth group leader asked all of us what we wanted most in the future. My answer...I want to play bingo. See the sunset from the porch. I want to be old, sit with my friends and family and reminisce. Share memories of those we've lost. The trials we faced. The lessons we learned. The gifts we gained. 

I knew from a young age tomorrow is not guaranteed. I'd lost my sister. And now I was given a time line. Have you made arrangements? The social worker will be in to help set up hospice. I was 21. We somehow were blessed with more time. We had a beautiful girl. A year later I was being told to have an abortion. Time with this beautiful girl or a chance to have another child. Do you want to see her graduate? You're body will give up before your 40. The doctors words. I chose the risks. More Lupus flares, harder days. 

And here I am. 40. 

My senior year I saw myself at 40 with a career in lobbying for health care in Washington. Maybe I'd be married have a couple kids.

And here I am. A very proud lunch lady, married for 18 years, and two kids I'd risk it all for again. My body is damaged. Brain function lost, where did I put the milk, did I know you, did I put my pants on. Arms and legs that forget how to work. 

Every pain worth it.

Tomorrow's not guaranteed. I have today. 

A day to love the hard to love, forgive the unforgivable. Stand in the sun, breathe in the woods. Argue and make amends. Watch the sunset. Love.


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