More Perspective

standard April 24, 2009 2 responses

I came home from a lovely evening out with my husband watching the live broadcast of Ira Glass’ show This American Life ready to vent about my stressful and irritating day.

Before opening my blogger dashboard I checked my email and found a lovely note from Shana. Yes, Shana, from Gorillabuns, mother of the adorable Thalon who passed away unexpectedly two weeks ago. Her precious baby is dead and she’s taking the time to email everyone who left a comment on her blog. Mindboggling.

Then, because the two will forever be linked in my mind, I went to check on the Spohrs, whose sweet daughter Maddie passed away also unexpectedly shortly before Thalon. Today Maddie’s oxygen tank, an essential piece of life maintaining medical equipment, was picked up from their home. It’s absence is now a painful visual reminder that their daughter is really gone.

I left a couple tearful comments and swallowed in an attempt to dislodge the lump in my throat before turning to my blog post. And that’s when I drew a blank. I can’t help it, venting about irritating insurance practices or waxing poetic about my writing style of choice just seems petty in the face of all that sadness and loss.

I’m sure I’ll be back with something trite or funny tomorrow. Or maybe an anecdote about some mundane part of our lives. But tonight I’m going to go to bed and think about those two little children and their parents and how I know they wish they could just be going to bed frustrated about silly arguments or irritating insurance claims.

Some days it’s all about perspective

standard January 31, 2009 7 responses
I woke up to an email from an editor saying that the publication for which I was writing my first print article was going on an extended hiatus. For a year or so. She said this in reply to an email sent by me the night before, letting her know that I was on track for my Monday deadline. I salvaged the situation as best as possible, but to say that I was disappointed would be the understatement of the year.

I checked the rest of my email and found out that a dear friend’s new baby is terribly colicky. She’s going insane what with the no sleep and non stop screaming. Right then my disappointment seemed petty.

I checked some more email and learned that somewhere in the blogosphere two parents brought home their 2 year old daughter so they could watch her die. Her cancer has become so aggressive treatment isn’t an option. What’s a missed writing opportunity in comparison to the death of a child?

I hugged my children close and took them to school and daycare. Then I sat down to salvage my day. I sent emails and worked on some projects. Then I answered a call from my husband. He was delirious, hardly making any sense. He sounded like he was crying and laughing at the same time. He’d thought he was better from his flu and had gone to work. He was on his way back home, freaked out by the incessant chills.

I dropped everything, rushed to pick C up from school so I could take her to daycare early. I hurried home to see what was wrong with M. I found him shaking in bed, burning up, lethargic, completely out of sorts. One frantic phone call later to his sister, our internist, and we were in the car headed to see her. Shortly after that we were headed to a nearby radiology office, script for lung x-rays in hand. We didn’t learn until later that he didn’t have pneumonia, just a terrible case of the flu.

I took him home and put him to bed, I went out to get his meds, and then I sat on the couch to try to get a tiny bit of work done before going to collect the girls. Unfortunately, I was too riled up from my pharmacy trip to get anything worthwhile done.

It was a long and very frustrating day. It was filled with disappointment, sadness, fear, and frustration. The kids sensed all this and were extra challenging tonight. In fact, it’s 11pm and for some reason Little L won’t sleep. Instead she just keeps crying and fussing.

But I just learned that that little girl passed away today. So I’m going to take my tear stained face and go cuddle gratefully in bed with my grumpy daughter and sick husband, because even though I had a truly terrible day, I know it could have been so very much worse.

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