Sunday, December 27, 2015

On the edge

2015 is almost a wrap and here we sit on the edge of it's final hours, watching a new year roll in.

It's been an incredible year and by incredible, I mean hard! It's been a year I won't ever forget.  When I look back on this year, I can't say I've been happy with it but it hasn't been short of lessons learned.

Most days, we don't really notice the toll the year has taken on us.  We get up, we do what needs to be done and we repeat that pattern, day after day.  Every so often, the underlying angst breaks through and it stings.  Clearly, we are different.  All of us are just a little weary.

Last night, Shelbie came home to get her clothes packed for her trip to California tonight and had a little nervous breakdown.  She has been at odds with things for two weeks, just on edge about everything.  As it turns out, a new year makes her anxious.  She worries about what is coming next.  She worries that it's another year of struggling...and on and on it goes.

Early this morning, I got a call at 3:10 am.  A call at 3:10 am is typically not a call with good news. On the other end was one of my children.  They have been at their dad's most of the week for the Christmas holiday.  It was a tearful voice of panic on the other end wondering if I was okay.  They had had a bad dream in which I had died.  Apparently, it felt real; too real and they just had to know I was okay.

I wasn't expecting this.  I certainly wasn't expecting a conversation about death and dying in the middle of the night.  It's been all too frequent around here this year. I hardly think it's a topic that circles the average family dinner table in a year, let alone every couple of years.  For us, it feels like a weekly subject that just comes up.

We talked for nearly 45 minutes.  The end of our conversation was the strangest goodbye.  I said goodbye like it was the end.  I left nothing unsaid; no regrets.  I made sure they knew how much I loved them. They shared similar sentiments.

It was sad.  We hung up and I felt scared.  What if it wasn't just a crazy dream?  They called back at 7 and then came home at 8:30 to pick up some things before going to church with their dad.

When you unpack the year, it has, without a doubt, left us all a little on edge.  A little more anxious than usual.  I didn't realize that chronic disease could have this effect on us.  I don't think we will ever be use to this.  Nevertheless, we will soldier on with hope.  Always having hope that better days are coming but most importantly, living without regret.  There are no promised tomorrows.


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