Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Waiting For the Other Shoe ....

... to drop .... and land right on my head.
Or, rather, on my life.

That's where I find part of my mind these days.
Not a large part, but still ....

Funny (or really, not funny at all), my mind rarely, if ever, went there in my "before".
I enjoyed my life, our life, without wondering when it would go to hell in a hand basket.

I felt blessed that our children, all six of them, were healthy .... and didn't wonder when that would end.
I made plans with my husband about our future .... never once doubting that there would be one.

I could give my children a kiss and send them back to college .... or just off on an errand .... and not consider that it that might be the last time I see them.

I could watch a young couple playing in the park with their small children .... without wondering if they realized that could be the last day they were a family.

I could see a father with his daughter .... and not question whether he's going to be there to walk her down the aisle.
I could attend my son's football game alone .... never once thinking that I'd really be doing it alone one day.

There seem to be an infinite number of times I enjoyed my life .... without waiting for that other shoe.

I don't think about it every day.
And I am able to enjoy life again, without wondering when the next wave will knock me down.

But there are moments .... quiet, sneaky little moments that creep on on me ..... and make me look over my shoulder to see if my past is repeating itself.

Moments when I'm enjoying an evening with someone new ..... and then suddenly wondering how much longer he's going to live.


  1. Janine, what a great post. 19 months ago, I would have never thought about "the other shoe" dropping. But now it is constant and not just in the context of death. It is hard to get close to anyone because I fear they will be taken away just as my husband was taken away suddenly and without any warning.

    Hugs to you!

  2. Future plans, weddings, football games, lifes' daily events...all redefined now as a single person, not anything any of us expected. When in a crowd, I often wonder who else is a widow/widower? . Do I look any different than they? Can they tell who I am? I am always looking.

    The father/daughter connection of him walking her down the aisle just tears me up, as my daughter (and son) are both in serious relationships. I can't imagine him not being here for these major events in our lives.

    Likewise, I can't imagine another relationship and having to go through it (death) all over again. But that is the path we are all on, and somehow we keep walking on it, dealing with whatever comes our way. My steps are still tentative, but I'm moving. Thanks, Janine. Perhaps the past will not repeat itself, but if it does, you are stronger than most for having gone through it already.

  3. Oh how true!
    I find myself thinking of this lately.
    The fear of losing someone. If you are really going to love them.
    That will always be a possibility.
    But - the funny thing is . . .
    it always was going to happen.
    We just didn't think about it. Now we are awake - we know.
    In some ways we will never take life for granted again.
    A tragic way to have discovered this but a truth everyone needs.

    I say - love anyway. With your whole heart, without knowing when, just never forget it will - only next time it could be us.

  4. I always enjoy your blogs. I have unfortunately been in this position since I was a child, when my father passed a few months before I turned ten years old. I saw the finality, because he never came home. I realized that anyone could die at any time. He was 46, and left six children. From that moment on, I was well aware that tomorrow is promised to no one, and this is a temporary gig for all of us. As an adult, when I fell in love, I did so completely, and with my entire heart. Two years ago, my 28 year marraige ended when my husband passed. What I have parsed from these experiences is to take nothing for granted, kiss your loved ones goodbye when they leave for the day and tell them you love them (you may never get the chance again), NEVER say no to true love (no relationship ends well, ever). Most importantly, to me, is to live your life so you will not have any regrets, be it in what you do with your life, how you treat others, your faith, not judging others (God will slap you down for that one). It all goes fast and there are no guarantees. Ask a nurse or dr. who works in a childrens' hospital and sees death every day. Death doesn't discriminate. Always, always, choose love. It is always a risk, and always comes with a price, but it is also the only thing that really matters and the only thing you can take with you when you leave this earth. Love to all!!