Sunday, October 6, 2019

13 Years Left

I never forget what day she died.

October 6th.

But sometimes I forget what year she died.

Sometimes I think I want to.
Sometimes I'm so ashamed that I did.

Sometimes I'm still a little bit angry.
Sometimes I can't believe I have the nerve to feel that way.

There's always a little bit of empty hanging around in the back of my head...

...and my heart.

I do the math in my head...


My mother died in 2007, 12 years ago. She was 63 and it really was much too soon.
If I live as long as she did, I would only have 13 years left to live.

This is appalling and terrifying.

One of the good times.
But of course, I've had the cancer. So I think about this more, probably, than the average person. I count time every single day: time since the cancer, time until my risk of recurrence drops, time until my next checkup. If I've properly learned all of my cancer lessons,  I should automatically embrace every day like the gift that it is. I should wave my pink ribbon and appreciate every last little blessing I encounter. And I must admit, there was a time not very long ago that I would have done anything...   .almost     anything   .... to know I was lucky enough to have 13 more years of life to live.

Mama would have been 75 this year and she has missed so much. I still yell out to her by the nickname my father gave her, "Hey Fee! How about that!"  "Oh Fee, can you believe that?"  I bug her with random musings.  I share the gossip. I pass on my worries. But mostly I tell her all of the good stuff because at the end of the day, life offers mostly good stuff to be grateful for.

I try really hard to appreciate the cancer lesson society thinks I should have learned.  Most of the time I do truly understand the value of a single day.  I would give anything...   almost     anything   .... to have one more day to be with Mama and share all of the good parts of life with her. Yet, at the same time, if it turns out I only have 13 more years (or less) to live, I'm going to be pretty darn angry that my time here on earth ended so prematurely.  Without a doubt, 13 years will never be a sufficient amount of time to live it all, to do it all, to see it all.

One day really is such a gift but 13 years will never, ever be enough.