May 26, 2014

Nine Years

It's a sleepless night. Thoughts of end of the semester work, and Montreal conference programming, and the shooting rampage that left six innocent young students dead swirl through my brain. And I lay on my back unable to sleep. Michael is facing me, his strong arm around me, his warm breath exhaling against my arm and I become hyper aware of his breathing...exhale, exhale, exhale. I flash back to the cold surroundings of ICU and the machines breathing for him. And then another one comes...our bedroom in Woodland Hills. I'm alone on top of the covers of our big bed wearing two-day old clothes. Michael's side of the bed is empty with just his pillows and a porch light is shining in my face. I am attempting to get my two hours of sleep before heading back to ICU at 4 a.m. to be sure I'm there for his bath so he can feel my presence. And then I'm in the present again, exhale...exhale...exhale...and the stress of the moment leaves my body because I realize that nothing is better than my life right now, at this moment. It is what I prayed for. Hoped for. Begged for. Michael's life. Michael's breath.

We celebrated nine years of marriage last week. Nine years of love and romance, and friendship and family, and grandchildren and laughs, and illness and survival.

My sister sent me a quote by Lao Tzu: "If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present." I struggle to live in the present because I know that at any moment, life as we know it can end. A shooting. An accident. An illness. But then he, out, in, out, and all is well with the world.

Posted at May 26, 2014 3:51 AM



Posted by: gina at May 26, 2014 3:40 PM

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