When I was a kid, I ached to be older. I was confident that adults didn’t have problems the way kids did. They weren’t mean to each other, petty, or unfair. They behaved themselves and I was sure of this.
My bubble was burst with a double blow at around eight years old. First, I found out that Ronald Reagan was not a Mormon, which was so personally devastating, I was sure that we were all headed for impending doom. Next, I learned that our close neighbor and friend had cheated on his wife and they were divorcing. (And he was a Mormon, by the way.) I couldn’t imagine such a thing. The world was suddenly unfamiliar and nothing I believed about the adult world made sense any more.
I have spent too many moments since that day being disappointed and devastated with adults being stupid, petty and unfair. In short, I keep getting upset that everyone is human. Including me.
Ryan and I had an upsetting weekend, and for two nights, we’ve barely slept. Filled with anger and disappointment and devastation, I once again forgot that people aren’t always perfect. Even people I care about. Somehow, I always start thinking that my loved ones are super human. This paradigm shift caused our heads to spin, our stomachs to churn, and our hearts to ache. We tossed and turned all night, clinging to each other like little kids afraid in the dark.
This morning, however, I started to feel the relief I’d been searching for all weekend. Time always helps me. I can get over this. Then, as part of a morning ritual, I checked on the blog of a friend of Alison’s whose husband is fighting Stage IV lung cancer and this is what I read:
Friday, he was very restless, moving from the bed to his recliner all day. ( I am wondering if maybe he was trying to do the hokey pokey) They put a line in him, to directly pump in nausea medicine. This helped relax him a little bit more and to make him comfortable. They also increased his pain medicine for the 4th time to help with his pain. He slept all night long.
Today he is still sleeping. He has had a few alert moments. We have had some pretty special “family times” during these past few days that we wouldn’t trade for the world. The spirit in our home is very strong. We can all feel just how thin that veil really is. There is more love here than the Waltons ever had at bedtime. Time seems to strangely stand still, and our grandfather clock still reads, 12:40. For some reason we can’t change it. “Enjoy life, it’s precious time.”
And then I understood. Life is a mixture of human and superhuman moments. Sometimes we disappoint others and sometimes we amaze them. The trick is not to expect one or the other from people, but to accept both. And even though the view from where I stand today is nothing like I expected when I was 7 and 3/4 years old, it is still magnificent.