Six years is a pretty long time. Where were you six years ago compared to now? Where do you hope to be in six years? Six years ago I would have imagined that now, I would about to celebrating a 10 year wedding anniversary. Today however my life is much different than I ever would have imagined. Most days I am at work then school or in the E.R. Trying to get hours knocked out to finish my paramedic schooling. Or I am at home spending time with my family. As I stood here last night I couldn’t help but feel blessed.
I know it is crazy, but I am overwhelmed with the blessings in my life right now. 6 years ago I stood in this same place in the worst shape that I hope I will ever have to be in. As I stood there yesterday, I felt no need to talk to a grave. Rach is in a much better place than that. I just reflected. I remembered where I was then and how far I have come. I thought about my wife Alyssa and what an amazing woman she is. I thought about how much I love my kids and how blessed I am to have them. I thought about my brother and sister-in-law who were pretty much there for me day in and day out after Rachael passed.
Last week I asked Alyssa the question, “what would you do if I died today?” I know I am terrible right. The truth is I am going into a field where I deal with death a lot. Not to mention losing my wife who was 22 years old. So naturally I think about it. I was sitting in class thinking about one sentence Rach told me the night she died. She looked at me and said “I don’t want to die”. I of course assured her she wouldn’t die. It made me think, what if My day was today? What if all that Taco Bell finally got the best of me and my heart said “I’m done”? My thoughts went immediately to Alyssa and my kids. I never want Allie to have to experience that sort of loss. I don’t want my kids to have to grow up without their father, who loves the mess out them.
We all don’t ever want to die although it is inevitable. We all feel invincible and like there is always tomorrow! Right? I don’t ask the question to be morbid. It’s a reminder to treat life as fragile as is. To always invest into today. We can’t predict the future, we don’t know when our time will come. All we can do is make today matter. Make sure we do our best now.
You never know where six years will bring you. Six years ago I stood in the trauma room in Mount Clemens hospital with my brother as the hospital staff was doing all they could to bring her back. It’s ironic that I now go to that same hospital in that same room. Learning to take care of people that need help and being a part of those unfortunate times when there is nothing that can be done. I understand what the families are going through in those moments. I don’t however relate to the patient. I don’t know what it is like to stare death in the face and think or say the words, I don’t want to die, knowing that I may not make it. One thing I do know is that when I get to that moment I want to know that I did all that I could while I was still alive.
I woke up this morning excited… to see the look on my son’s face. It’s Christmas!! He doesn’t even totally understand what that means. To him it means that when he wakes up, His dada will be home (almost never happens) and will spend the entire day with him. I can’t help but think at times like these that Rachael was right!! She wanted kids more than anything! ME, I didn’t. Now look at me. Excited to spend the day with my awesome wild son and gorgeous little girl and amazing wife.
On a morning like this I can’t help but think about those people in Newtown. I don’t even know them. I don’t know their names. A part of me doesn’t want to know, that I way I can pretend it isn’t real. That it was all just a horrible dream. It was horrible, and for those families it was and is no dream. It is a loss I can barely fathom. I can remember waking up the next day after my wife Rachael passed away. The feelings all come back when I hear the story of Newtown. I can see the sights, remember the feelings, and hear the sounds just like it was yesterday. It is something those families and many more are experiencing this very morning. They aren’t waking up to smiles and laughter. It may seem unreal, but tears are their only comfort and sometimes are the only way to let the emotions loose.
If that is you today, Hold your head high. Celebrate the life that you had the opportunity to be a part of. no matter how long or short it was. Don’t be afraid to talk about them often, and cry if you have to. Just do it. It is all part of the process. You are stronger than you realize and because bad things happen doesn’t mean there isn’t Hope. Celebrate those that you DO still have in your life also!
If you woke up this morning and are surrounded by family and fun and laughter and love… cherish it all
hug a little longer
Cuddle a little longer
Stay up a little later
Laugh a little harder
Forgive and forget
turn off the tv and games and TALK a LOT longer
God is the only constant in this life. You never know what turns life will take tomorrow. So make today matter. My tears today are tears of joy. Tomorrow may be a new morning, with different twists and turns. All we can do is make today matter while we are still here.
Take a moment and pray for those families in Connecticut, and spend some time with those in your family that are alone this season. And never leave without letting the people you love, Know that you love them… tell them.
Imagine with me for a moment that your whole life as you know it comes to an abrupt screeching halt. You know the feeling. You are driving in the car with someone and not really paying attention (neither is the driver) when all of a sudden… they slam on the pedal and the car(along with your body) tries to go from 50 mph to 0 instantaneously.
What happens? Your heart starts racing, Your more aware of your surroundings than you have been in a while, You thank Jesus that your alive(and whoever is in the car with you). Bottom line is You are still alive!
I was unfortunate enough to experience a situation in my life like this, head on. You know, the whole “world comes crashing down moments” you think only happens to someone else, and almost always only does. Until it happens to you. Continue reading →