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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Always Fear the Hurricane

A few months ago, when I was alone, I'd catch myself writing and rewriting my father's eulogy in my head.  I caught myself getting really depressed over losing him and I became afraid to be without him.  A few months ago, we didn't know which direction he was going to go in when he started treatment.  We all feared the worst but hoped for the best.

It's strange how life can go from being nothing more than a day-to-day routine to becoming a category five hurricane, ravishing minds and bodies left and right.  For once in your life, you fear for someone or something.  For once in your life, you are worried and depressed and you want nothing more than to take away everything that is happening and wake up from the nightmare.

I always thought of myself as the farthest thing from selfish there was.  I always felt like I put others first way too much.  That is until my dad got sick.  When the initial shock wore off, I found myself falling into the same routine I always did in order to overcome something - to work.  Working always washed my worries away and made my life better.  I realized quickly, though, that this time was different.  I'd put in countless hours and travel miles just to work, so that by the time I got home, I was too tired to let my mind think of the inevitable.  This time, though, the problems didn't dissipate.  This time, they got worse and I began to realize just how selfish I was to allow myself to try and push them aside.

I've recently lost my job. I've lost that barrier that kept sanity and insanity miles apart from each other.  A year ago, if I lost my job, I would have been completely devastated, but now, I feel relieved.  After I was told I was being let go, my first thought was "I can spend more time with Dad now."  And I have been.  It's been less than a week and I'm with him every chance I get.  The selfishness is gone and the yearning to be there for him and with him is stronger than ever.  My mind is finally moving forward in the direction I needed to go in all along.

My best friend wrote something last night about how precious life is.  Before my father got sick, I'd find myself watching the news and getting aggravated over the crime and carelessness of today's society, however, it was never anything I'd lose sleep over because it never directly affected me.  It's human nature to feel sympathetic but never empathetic unless one can relate to the events being shown in front of them.  Now, its hit home for me.  I am very fortunate to have such a wonderful man as my father, because people actually can empathize with what I'm going through since they love him, too.  His life, to me, is more than precious.  It is that of a living angel, here to show the world what true heroism really is.

When you do watch the news at night or you are hearing a tragic story, you should always put yourself in the shoes of those who have been affected by it.  You never know when life throws that hurricane at you and destroys every fiber of your being.  You should be thankful for what you have and who you are fortunate enough to know because in a split second, something could happen that throws your life off track.

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