I struggled to decide whether to blow this one off or not. Decided it might be good to write about these things, though I know that won't delete my pain. While there have been any number of challenging times in my life, there are two that brought me to my knees. In my mind, they are forever entangled so I will tell both stories.
1968- He is just back from Viet Nam when we meet and fall in love. I am 21 years old, newly divorced with two small children. We are still in that giddily high place of new love. It is a day like any other. Mid-afternoon I get a call from my doctor verifying a pregnancy test. I call my husband, and he is so happy. The last words I speak to him are "I love you."
He works in a town about 30 minutes away. Time passes and he doesn't come home from work. Darkness falls. The little girls are sleeping. The phone rings about midnight and a voice first verifies that I am indeed, Mrs. Roger Wright. The next words take my breath, break my heart; and my world starts to crumble. "Mrs. Wright, your husband has been in a car accident and is not expected to survive. You need to come immediately." My father, a policeman, had heard the license plate being called in and is on his way to get me. Though, I am there before Roger breathes his last, he never regains consciousness. I am stubborn and insist on identifying him. Unrecognizable except for the tattoo on his bicep;that image is a permanent imprint in my brain. He lives four hours. These are the longest four hours of my life ever. The death certificate reads: cause of death 95% third-degree burns. A challenge, oh yes.
The following event is forever linked to the first for me because Sarah was Roger's granddaughter.
1992-February - Another phone call in the middle of the night. My daughter's voice hysterically screaming, "There's been a fire. We are at the hospital. They won't let me see Sarah (her two-year old daughter)." Though never burned, Sarah died of smoke inhalation. My daughter was burned trying to save her.
March - My mother has her first heart attack. She is hospitalized off and on until October 18 at midnight when she dies in the ER.
October 19, 9 a.m. at the same hospital, my husband is diagnosed with cancer and soon begins a long series of chemo and surgery.
Certainly all lives hold challenges. These are the most powerful of mine. They changed and shaped me in uncounted ways. And, maybe now you understand my struggles with anxiety a little better. And, maybe now I do feel a release at putting this down in words. Maybe.
The daughter that Roger and I made grew up and is a nurse. She has 3 more children. My husband survived and is healthy.
I hope the next prompt is more cheerful. I have disabled comments for many reasons.