It amazes me how some people are so accepting of life’s challenges, determined to enjoy every day as it comes no matter what else they must endure. A dear friend has been battling cancer, and after a crisis that entailed a visit to the hospital, she was told she has three to six months. She and her husband are accepting and cheerful, happy and grateful for each day given them, so I can do no less. When I get to see her, I too will be cheerful, happy, and grateful for the time together, will feel privileged to considered a part of the family, but beneath the cheer, my heart will be breaking.
Words from “Hurt,” a song written by Trent Reznor for the band “Nine Inch Nails,” but also poignantly sung by Johnny Cash keep going around in my head: Everyone I know goes away in the end.
Barring any unforeseen problems, traumas, accidents, illnesses, I could live many more years, perhaps decades. The problem with a long life is that everyone does go away in the end. There are always new people to meet (at least, I hope there always will be; after all, the nonagenarian woman I take care of has met me, and we’ve become friends), but that does not mitigate my sorrow for those who “go away.”
Oddly, this is the first friend whose death I will have to deal with. Most friends I lose go away in a less permanent way, or I go away.
But I don’t want to think about that. Like her and her husband, I want to focus on the happiness of the day. I want to be grateful for the joy she’s brought into my life, to be happy for the time we still have, to be accepting of life’s challenges.
But there’s still that poor, aching heart of mine to deal with and the tiny voice in the back of my mind that whispers, “It’s so not fair.”
What if God decided S/He didn’t like how the world turned out, and turned it over to a development company from the planet Xerxes for re-creation? Would you survive? Could you survive?
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