Thursday, March 4, 2010

Even When Life is Long, It's Still Too Short

Some days I think that I'll go back to work and put my son in a daycare facility, but not for the reasons you might think. I don't need additional adult stimulation, I don't want to talk about things other than diapers, and we don't particularly need the money.

But I crave the thrill of the sales process. I loved helping people see that they needed what I was offering. And, for those who didn't agree right away, I also loved the follow up. On more than one occasion, I captured a student more than two years after they made the initial contact.

As much as I'd like to sell ice to Eskimos, I feel that staying home to raise my son is important and it is a gift. Infancy and toddlerhood don't last long and I just can't choose my own selfish desire for my career over my son. You only get one shot at raising your children and I don't want to miss out on doing it the way that I think is best for our family.

I've become very aware, sometimes painfully aware, of missed opportunities as I've aged. My life is full of plans that I wish I had made, trips that I wish I had taken, words that I wish I had said. . .

Where am I going with all this? Why am I so pensive tonight? I guess I'm considering life and the choices we make because I lost a very dear friend last night.

Edna Frazier had style. I don't know her age, ladies of a certain age don't discuss such matters, but I would guess somewhere in the late-70s or early-80s. She was always impeccably dressed. Her nails were always neatly manicured and her hair was always attractively coiffured. She always looked beautiful and put together.

She was a wonderfully kind woman. I can't think of a single time that I didn't see a smile on her lovely face. She was very generous and giving. She always complimented me on how handsome my son was, how much she liked his short hair cuts, how cute she thought I dressed him.

Edna holds such a dear spot in my heart because she and her daughter, Cindy, were the only two people at the hospital on "my" side on the day that my son was born. Sure, my husband and his entire family were there. But, for various reasons, no one from my family came to the hospital that day.

My son was scheduled to be born around 8:00 am and he didn't arrive until just shy of 6:00 pm. I have no idea how long Edna and Cindy waited, but it was around 8:00 pm when I finally came out of recovery and they were there.

Though I have two pictures of the first time I met my son in the OR, I don't recall the event. In my memory, the first time I met my son was when my husband brought him to my room. I held out my arms and began crying with joy at the sight of my darling boy. My MIL and my husband's youngest brother were there for just a few moments and left the three of us for the evening. I felt a tremendous rush of love in that moment.

That's when Edna and Cindy walked in my room with balloons, flowers, a personalized welcome sign, an outfit (the one he ended up wearing in his first pictures) & a football (!) for my son, and a baby bootie necklace for me. Perhaps it's because I was in the warm hormonal afterglow of childbirth, perhaps it's because no one else bothered to come, but I always think of Edna, Cindy, and my MIL when I think of that most joyous moment between my husband, myself, and our son. It was a magical moment and I'm glad that they chose to be there and share our joy.

I never told Edna just how special she was to me and I have no choice now but to add that to my list of life regrets. She was so well-loved by her family and friends and she will be sorely missed by all who knew her.

Cindy is an only child and my heart just breaks for her tonight. She was very close to her mother and I know that she must feel devastated. Edna had been ill and spent quite a bit of time in the hospital toward the end, but we're never really ready to say goodbye. Even when life is long, it's still too short. . .


  1. I'm so sorry about your friend... my prayers will be with you and their family...