Friday, April 22, 2016
~Better Off For All That We Let In~
If you had asked me ten years ago where I hoped I would be today, I would have said that Mickey and I would be living in a college town, we would have four kids and live in a cute neighborhood w a sidewalk where the kids draw chalk drawings and ride bicycles.
He would wake up and drive his VW Karmann Ghia to his job as a professor at the college, and I would work part time. I would wish to wear cargo pants and keens to work and meet Mickey for lunch and coffee dates.
Our children would go to a good school and our evenings would be full of soccer games and track meets, our weekends spent lounging on our porch drinking a cold drink and piddling in our yard.
On Tuesday morning, after I dropped the kids off at school, I went an visited a friend downtown in her shop. I walked around, wearing Oak until it was time to pick up the littles from pre-school. Then the kids and I met Mickey downtown for lunch in Aggieville. We talked over enchiladas and a cold drink.
Wednesday evening Mickey drove straight from teaching to meet me at the soccer field. Eliot scored a goal and we cheered from the sidelines while laughing with our friends. We went and got ice cream after the game and she asked us to play Taylor Swift songs on the stereo.
Last night we all sat out on the deck and ate dinner. Baked salmon and broccoli with garlic bread. Mickey played some Pearl Jam on the stereo and the wind blew gently as we chatted on the deck and watched the kids run around. We talked about the sprinkler system and if I was ever going to get tomatoes planted and how much time track season was going to consume.
After dinner the kids played on the piano and Eliot asked me to sing her some hymns out of a piano book. The girls cleaned their room (without being asked) and the boys fell asleep as soon as their heads hit the pillow.
Mickey and I lay in bed watching Seinfeld and he rubbed my head until I fell asleep.
That's my life. Its busy and chaotic and wonderful. We have more kids that I imagined we would have, and we drive a VW van (we sold the Ghia years ago), and people sometimes say "Oh, are you the family that drives the big van that looks like it might life off the ground, so cool", to which I reply "yes, my husband thinks it is cool too". haha
We live in Kansas and I'd never even been to Kansas. There is always laundry to be done and transporting kids here and there and everywhere.
Our life is really all that I ever hoped it would be and more.
Except this dark cloud looms on the horizon. The thing that I dread most is not far enough in the distance. I always feel pressed for time. I feel like I need to do it all right now because my future is uncertain and it seems like a future that doesn't exist.
We look at our sweet baby boy and we wonder if his hair will be white and curly and unruly like his brother's? We look at the ceiling in our bedroom and talk about what we might do to the room one day....if we have time. We wonder what the kids will be like when they are grown. Will they run track in high school?
All the little thoughts of future that come with raising five children...all of those thoughts come with the pangs of knowing that time is limited.
I wake in the morning and I stare at the ceiling and everything seems good, but then I feel the jab in my heart, reminding me...reminding me that THIS is happening....THIS is real. Cancer has entered our lives and its stealing our hopes and dreams right out from under our noses and we have absolutely no control as to the outcome.
We smile and chit chat and the kids climb into bed with us...and then Mickey sits on the edge of the bed. His body is covered in scars. He lays back down to cuddle a bit longer before going downstairs and making a smoothie to take his four huge chemotherapy pills with.
Life keeps going. With or without you, the Earth keeps spinning and time keeps passing and the sun comes up and the moon rises and each day brings with it joy and pain. Joy that we are here, together. Pain that the future is uncertain. Uncertain for everyone...
So I try to value today. I cry more, but I also try to hug more and laugh more and take it all in. This fragile and beautiful life is worth every second we are given and I try to feel every second of it. Feel it fully.
Better off for all that we let in....