Monday, April 26, 2010

two reminders

Yesterday, I received not one, but two reminders of just how precious this life is and how very blessed I am.

Driving to Vanderbilt hospital to do a massage for a man who had cancer, I came very close to having a horrible car wreck. There was an SUV two cars ahead of me that suddenly swerved, then flipped and then started to skid into the car in front of me. I had a concrete barrier beside me and nowhere to go, so I just held on tightly to the wheel. Somehow the car in front of me missed the upside down vehicle and I followed closely behind him, coming within inches of the wrecked truck. I looked in my rear-view to see about 5 cars pulling over to help, so I did not try to get off the road to help. I'm sure I could not have been much help, shaking as badly as I was. Somehow I managed to get down to Vandy, park and calm myself down so that I could work on this man with cancer.

He'd had Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma (I think) and then some kind of stem cell treatment that had completely messed up his whole digestive tract. He had not been allowed to eat or drink anything, not even water, for 22 days! I cannot even imagine how horrible that would be. His mother told me how much he longs for just a sip of water.

On the way home, part of me was extremely sad.  I think it bought up feelings about my dad and how I had not been able to be there or to help him in any way when he was slipping away with bone cancer. I never really got to say goodbye. We thought he was getting a little better and I had a flight scheduled, but then he passed away. And part of me was sad for this man I'd just worked on who would be so happy just to have a cool drink of water or a bit of food.

And the rest of me was incredibly grateful for this life I have, filled with so many friends and family, a good job, good health, the ability to do so many things that I enjoy doing like dancing, biking, hiking and photography and on top of all that a warm, safe, lovely home, clothes, a car, plenty of incredibly blessed I am! I don't want to take one moment of this gift for granted. I know I'm not promised one moment beyond the one I inhabit right now. And I don't want to take all the wonderful people and things in it for granted, because they are not promised to me tomorrow either. (And you know what? I'm glad I'm not wasting any of the precious moments of this year watching TV...I know I made a good choice in that regard for sure!) Going to bed counting my blessings. :-)

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