This Isn’t Funny. . .But It’s Important

Yesterday, I decided I really needed exercise.  I had been doing these lame walks around the Patterson Park Boat Lake and home again super fast because it’s been cold and gray and I haven’t been feeling it.

But I realized that even my most forgiving yoga pants were starting to feel a little more snug.  And I just can’t get any fatter.  I can’t.

So yesterday I decided to take Mac to the Inner Harbor via the waterfront promenade.  It was a lot colder than I anticipated but we were prepared and we had a nice LONG walk, we played with some gigantic musical “instruments” in the park, and Mac had a grilled cheese and fries at Lenny’s Deli.  (And yes, I only snuck a few bites for myself.)

Inner Harbor 1

I was feeling very happy about our day.  Albeit I did try running some of the way home and shortly thereafter it felt like my knee caps were going to pop off any time I attempted to bend my leg but what can you expect not having run for at least 6 years?

Last evening Chris took Mac upstairs for a bath and I cleaned up dinner and opened up the alumni magazine from my undergrad college.  I used to read them cover to cover because it’s a pretty engaging read.  Now I don’t have time for such things so I skimmed until I got to the juiciest parts:  Alumni news.

I don’t keep in touch with many folks I went to undergrad with. . .just a few.  But it was such a small school I knew many of the alums in several different graduating classes and I have lots of fond memories of many of them.  I love reading about what they are doing professionally and personally in the Alumni News section.

The thing about the “news” section is it also includes news of alums who have passed away.  I usually give it a glance but not much more.  Except this time my eyes hit upon a header for my Class’s graduating year.  Someone from my class had passed away.

And it was someone I knew kinda well back in the day and really liked and respected.

She died.

I was stunned.  I couldn’t catch my breath.

How could this have happened?!

She was stunningly beautiful.  She was super smart.  She was funny.  A good athlete.   How was this possible?!  My day suddenly became a lot less happy.  My aching knees were all but forgotten.

Well, thanks to Google, I know how it happened:  She had skin cancer.  She also had a 23-month old daughter.  And a handsome husband.  And a wonderful career in Exploratory Geology.  And she was just as stunning in the photo that accompanied her obituary as I remembered.

She’s gone.

I’ve been reeling ever since.

All too often, we can’t make sense of how things work or why things happen.

All we can do is be thankful for every day. . .even the cold gray ones.

And this morning, when Mac got awake I made certain we said a little thank you right then and there that we had another day together. . .even if it was another cold and gray one.

We geared up and we took a walk.  We stopped at the playground which I had been avoiding for weeks for fear Mac would catch nasty kid germs playing there.  And I pretended those tears in my eyes were from the cold wind as I watched Mac gleefully slide down the slide for the 36th time, but the truth is. . .

I was overcome by how thankful I was to just to be there.

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14 thoughts on “This Isn’t Funny. . .But It’s Important

  1. I can remember going to my 25th class reunion. Someone popped up, “Who in our class has passed away?” My first thought was, “Isn’t this a little premature?” I have never gone to another since. It was not seeing who I out lived. It was simply because I saw the same people sitting with the same people they hung out with when we were in high school. And, for the most part, the same personalities I disliked so many years before had not changed one iota. But, as you said, time does march on, and it does claim its victims. Sorry, it doesn’t get any better.

    • I’ve never been to one of my class reunions. However, my 95 year old grandma routinely attends hers. . .(Seems they’ve had to combine at least a decade’s worth of classes or better at this point due to um. . .the decline in numbers). Oh dear!

  2. This brought tears to my eyes. These stories always make me realize how lucky I am. I mean, I know I’m lucky, but sometimes we need a kick in the ass to TRULY understand how good we have it.

    Big hugs to you today.

    Give that adorable little boy a big hug.

    And have a sh*tload of wine tonight. 😉

    xo

  3. oh no, how sad! seeing things like that really make one stop and realize everything they have and be thankful for it because, hey, it could be so much worse. and congrats on the LONG walk. U go girl!

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