Wednesday, February 3, 2010

It got me....right in the old soft spot

The other day, as I stood innocently in line at the bank, something rather strange happened.

It was a long line, a slow line.....a "you have so much time you might as well do some people watching" sort of line. I found myself eyeing the other customers. We were quite a diverse little group. Most of us were being quiet and keeping to ourselves, However, one young man was talking VERY loudly on his cell phone. Many of us glanced back and forth trying not to listen to his conversation. In an effort to keep HIS business not MY business, I let me eyes wander to a lady a right beside me.

She appeared to be in her late 70's, and stood in that line with a purpose. Business in hand, she never took her eyes off the cashier's counter. Her face was determined, and the lines that played across her face were plenty. I let my eyes drop to her hands, and took in their experience. I followed the map of visible veins from one hand the other, as they clutched her deposit slip. I found myself wondering what she looked like in her 20's, her 30's, her 40's.....I know nothing about her, and yet she has been on this earth for over 70 years. I wondered who she nurtured....who she loved. I pondered who she is important to, right now. Who will grieve her when she is gone.

It was that moment, I had to turn my back to her, and let the tears flow. Never have I felt such a sense of inner sadness about how very short this life is. For the first time in my adult life, I quite literally broke down in angst that I will not be here forever. It sounds silly now, but at that very moment, I was totally in touch with my deepest desire to be here.....and by "here", I'm pretty sure I mean "here in the life I have NOW!"

I heard the voice in my head saying, "it's not fair, I don't want to grow old and die!" I hadn't heard that voice since I was young, and I do mean young. I can't recall how old I was exactly, but I remember that panic when I realized that at some point we all die. It was a hard pill to swallow then, and NOW....oh my word, NOW....it is all the more bitter.

NOW I have Sugar Bear. The mere thought of her being here....and me not...is overwhelming. I stood in that line at the bank choking back tears at the idea of Sugar watching me age, and having to let me go. I'm selfish. I really really am. I don't want to grow up. I don't want SUGAR BEAR to grow up. I want to be HERE! right HERE! HERE is good. I like HERE.

I looked at the lady again, and thought....I have a long life ahead of me....no need to panic now, right? right? Then the voice said, "I'm sure she thought that way too, and in a blink of an eye she is old, and on her way out!" (yeah...I'm sensitive like that. In all honesty, she looked rather spry for her age.) But seriously.....where did the last 35 years go.....and especially these last 5. What about the next 5.....and the next. I'll be dead before I know it!!!!


(Breathe COREY!)

I guess, I just had a moment of incredible weakness. A moment where I let my heart do the talking. Next thing I knew, it was my turn and I slipped from the line, made my deposit, and went on with my day like nothing happened.


P.S. I'm not depressed, don't worry. This particular event happened on THAT day...you know the one...THAT day. I was extremely hormonal. Now I'm good! Good for another three weeks...then....we'll do it again. Minus the new pets.....I hope! (cross your fingers for me!)


13 Live It or Love It:

Gayle said...

Wait until Sugar is older and the thought isn't about Sugar being here and you gone...it's about, "what if something happened to Sugar". I have teenagers and those thoughts can get me crying in a heartbeat. That skiing accident, the car crash, getting sick...something horrible happening to the most precious things in my life. That one scares me even more than me dying. And me dying is pretty damn scary.

I so totally understand this post.

Janet said...

I also understand this post - I get this awful feeling inside about my parents who are getting old. I had such an odd discussion with my mother over the phone last night - I put it down and wept. For some reason she is worried that I will let my relationship with my daughter go - WHY would she think that? We have a wonderful relationship and it hasn't been threatened. Is it just because she's getting old? It freaked me out somewhat ...

Fresh Mommy said...

Oh Corey, I think that would get me too. So thoughtful, so insightful. It's so true how we can't take any of these precious moments for granted. But also... are YOU pregnant ;)

Cheryl said...

Man. I know that feeling. I work retail and get to deal with older people all the time. They have so much to share and i have such a short time to listen to them. I start to think about the fact that my parents are aging and that I am miles away from them. What if something happens to either or to both of them? What about my kids. I had an awful experience once and feared that my son was dead. I can't go through that again. I want to be with them forever but now I know that the whole thing will be easier all the way around if I go first. That's the way it's meant to be.
For now we can only live in the moment, move forward, no regrets for what we've wasted and no thoughts towards what MIGHT happen.

Thanks for sharing!

April said...

What is it about 35 and this happening?! My husband and I are both 35 and kinda having these talks too! I am comforted by knowing I will be in heaven, but I am still sad at our mortality and how quickly life is passing by. It has really flown since we had children for sure. My husband is keanly aware that some of his dreams aren't coming true yet and if he wants them to come true there are some things he needs to start working on now. Me too actually....

Autumn said...

Oh yea, been there, done that. I know that feeling exactly, there are many times that I just briefly think about not being here and I start to tear up. Last night around 11pm I was jolted awake by a screeching of brakes and a bang. A car wrecked in the ditch in front of our house. My husband went outside to make sure no one was hurt and if they needed help. It was a teenager, he took the corner way too fast. He was ok but shaken up. I couldn't sleep, I just kept thinking about Bug and him being a teenager. I don't want him to be a teenager!! I want time to stand still RIGHT NOW!

Lisa said...

Corey, well said. I teared up reading this post. I have those days also, sometimes it makes me drive super slow, because what if, I were to get in a car accident. Not one person on this earth could love my children like I do.

Mr. Pedersen thinks I am a bit neurotic, I just think I am mother.

Hugs on your hormonal day,
Lisa

Deb - Mom of 3 Girls said...

Ugh, don't do that to me, girl! Sigh, I realized the other day that Abby's going to be 9 soon and that's halfway to 18. Seriously, she's halfway gone out of the house - already! That just can't be possible. Somehow I went from a new mom with a sweet little baby girl to having a third grader. And a first grader. And Becca's not too far behind her big sisters either. That just blows my mind when I think about it.

I'm fortunate enough that most of my family are still around. Both parents, aunts and uncles and such. But they're all now in their 70's and 80's and I know we're going to start losing people at some point here soon. I haven't been to a funeral since I was in high school. It's really hard to imagine the world without my parents in it - and so hard to imagine my kids without me some day. Sigh. Now I'm tearing up here too. I have the feeling I'm headed right toward 'one of those days' myself.

Michelle said...

I had similar feelings when my dad was dx with pancreatic cancer - it just hit me so hard about how...permanent death is. Which I know sounds totally odd to say, of course death is permanent! But the way it made me stop and REALLY think about it and just the whole finality of life...of thinking of my dad not being here anymore...of thinking about growing older and what will happen when I'm gone...what will I leave. It's very sobering to think like that. And it does make the tears fall.

Marcelle said...

You had me crying with you while reading this entry as you are not alone in what you felt and what you thought....reading the other comments I see that as well..I HAVE THOUGHT EVERY THOUGHT YOU THOUGHT...I hate getting older, I dont want to be an old lady either...I want to see my granchildren...I want to be here too.

I keep thinking of me as a child, my mom, my grandparents...then my grandparents passed over, my mom stepped into their shoes and I stepped into my mom's shoes and my children into mine...STOPPPPPPPPPP!!!!!
THIS IS TOO SCARY

I remember my mother in law being 40 something and playing with my kids in the swimming pool, she worked daily, went to gym 3x a week, worked and loved her garden, baked and loved entertaining...now she's in her late 80's and in a old age home...IT HAPPENED...
I am not so scared I get MS..how miserable will that be to have MS and be old!!!!!!!

Megan (FriedOkra) said...

So true, Corey. I've been dealing with those feelings for a couple of YEARS now - I just told Al about a week ago that I felt like maybe I'm going through my midlife crisis. Hard also lately has been watching my own parents age - their fading health and vitality sad and scary on so many levels. It's times like these (when life is good but also feels fleeting) that I have to really examine my faith and rely on the promise that as good (or bad) as life on earth may be, my life (and my parents' lives and my grandparents' lives) in Heaven with God will be so very much better. PERFECT, even. I don't know why that doesn't ALWAYS make the feelings you've described so beautifully here vanish, but it doesn't, always. Thank you for sharing this!

Life with Kaishon said...

I have a break down like that about once a week. Seriously. And the older they get the more frequently it occurs!

mrsmouthy said...

Oh man, I think about my own mortality every day. I don't want to get started here, but I really wish I could just turn around and walk away and go on with my day like you did, but my brain just doesn't know how to turn the alarm off. So anyway, I hear ya', sister.

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