Tuesday, October 21, 2014

In the Blink of an Eye

"In the blink of an eye, everything can change. So forgive often and love with all your heart. You may never know when you may not have that chance again." ~ Author Unknown

This is the message I found on my Facebook page as I perused the events of other people's lives a few mornings ago.

It was posted by my cousin's daughter with a few of her own words which assured the casual Facebook lurker (such as myself) that all was okay now. But she was was reminded of this truth the day prior.

I read that and thought of life in 'moments'.

One moment, your biggest concern is what to have for supper. The next, is unknown.

I walked through the moments that followed that day and my senses were heightened. In the blink of an eye, everything can change.

A slight twinge of discomfort became thoughts of "What if this didn't go away?" "What if something bigger was at play?"

My son heads off to school (by bike) each and every weekday and comes back, as expected each and every day. "What if he didn't?"

I went for a walk with my daycare family and was (once again) reminded of the close proximity of the road to the sidewalk. "What if a driver was distracted and veered towards us?"

I think these thoughts (almost) every time I venture out onto the highways. The roadways are filled with two to three thousand pounds of glass and steel moving at a speed in excess of 110 kph. Those drivers are distracted (myself included). Adjusting heat, music preferences, sipping on coffee, watching the time ... just doing things that we 'all' do when we are on the road for hours at a time. I look at those speeding bullets and marvel at the fact that one individual person's safety relies on millions of variables out of our control.

Each and every time I make the five hour trip to and from my mom's, the moment I drive back into my home city I breathe a sigh of relief. I make that final turn onto my street where I see our garage and I audibly sigh and exhale the words "Home at last. Thank you ..."

I have been on the receiving end of a phone call that has changed my life or altered the life of someone forever. The health of those we know and love is taken for granted. Until it is in jeopardy.

The last time Mom had a health scare, the ground beneath my feet opened up. I fell into a place of fear and uncertainty. I looked life-as-I-knew-it and was reminded that it could all change in a New York minute.

Thankfully, it was just a reminder. Not my reality. Others are not so fortunate. I am reminded of this each and every day.

My cousin's daughter replied to my message of concern last night. I can see clearly why she felt compelled to acknowledge how life can change in the blink of an eye. I can only imagine the fear and uncertainty of their reality. My knees shake when I think of myself in the shoes I remember wearing once upon a time.

"All is okay now." That doesn't seem to be enough. But it is truly all we ever have. Each and every day.

When the moment we are in is okay, it is enough. Okay gives us time to formulate an action plan. Okay gives us time to investigate and scrutinize. Okay gives other moments. Okay gives us hope. Okay gives us the opportunity to look beyond the moment and dare to dream.

One cannot live in fear of the "What if's" in life. It is paralyzing. But each and every time I am given a second chance, I start marveling at those life changing moments in time that sharpen my perspective and remind me of all I am already holding in my hands at that very moment in time.

Who cares what is for supper!? I guess that is why my fallback is fast food and frozen prepared entrees. Because in the whole scheme of things, what is for supper really doesn't matter.

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