Today is the nine year anniversary of my accident (my “traumaversary,” as it is sometimes called). I almost forgot this date as the day approached! One of the advantages of acclimating to a new normal I guess–the significance of this date looms less and less in importance as other noteworthy life events come into the forefront.
Scott and I have been talking a lot about the tsunami of changes the past couple of years have ushered in, between job changes, aging parents, and our kids morphing into stinky, emo teenagers trying (successfully) to weather an unpredictable worldwide pandemic. Working in hospitals has magnified the importance of the now moments– unearthing the fleetingness of youth. beauty. abilities. health. security. Covid has underscored these learnings as I have watched it bring people to their knees, distilling priorities and forcing a collective “hunkering down” to heal. To pause…. when our monkey-minds want to rumble.
I often ponder how each passing year has brought new wisdom and insight. Greater clarity in prioritizing, and less emphasis on the external, temporary whims that used to define my world. (They’re still there, just less-so)
There is so much living to be done. So many choices, so little time.
Middle age is an interesting place to be, with character lines now etched into my face by living and loving wholeheartedly. Eleven years after a life-changing traumatic adoption journey, nine years after a suffering a severe physical accident, and seven years after an amputation, I have been hounded by the lure of scrambling for the shards of youth vigor and vitality–while the reality of life’s temporariness continues to stare me in the face. Again, this little (big) issue of time haunts me. Man, life is beautiful, but it is short.
My daughter is driving (gasp!) and started her first job at the Tosa Rec Department. Two and a half more years and she’ll be off to college. Kai (the kid who came to us with global physical and developmental delays) is becoming a dang good skateboarder. He climbed his first 5.10+ recently. He’s doing okay in school with a village of support. Scott’s and my marriage has gotten stronger over time despite all we’ve been through (no small feat!). My dad is 79 with a host of medical issues. He’s still with us, but we’ve had many close calls. My mom is 76 and the pandemic has been hard on them…yet we’ve gingerly worked out ways to keep them in our lives in safe ways (masks, distance, etc). I’ve got a book in the works and am soooo close to being finished! (Yay! Send good mojo…) Our lives are full with friends, family, and meaningful work.
The biggest life lesson I’ve learned over the past nine years has been this: The endless pursuit of adventure is not “out there” somewhere. It’s right here. In my home. In my family and in my community.
Time is so precious. Cherish it.