Life can change in the blink of an eye. We all know that. All that we hold dear today could all be gone tomorrow. A lesson I learned the hard way, a lesson we should all be taught from very young so we can understand the impact it can make on our lives. It’s simple, really.
Everything we take for granted in the morning could be yanked from us by nightfall or vice versa.
Every single day something happens to a loved one of somebody’s. Job loss, divorce, abuse, death……it’s inevitable, I suppose, but these events carry with them lasting affects that will stay with us for the rest of our lives. These events will change us, will help us to see life in a completely different way than before the event. Sometimes, these changes are positive, but sometimes, they are negative. Either way, the end result is the same…..Change.
My family has had our share of accidents, mishaps, job loss, etc.
And each one I have encountered has changed me a little bit more. My outlook has changed. My perspectives have changed. What I hold dear in my heart has changed. My beliefs have shifted and my reactions to events have been altered.
When my daughter was around 2, we – along with my older children – were at the river on a warm spring day. The river was high with the snow melt and rushing by us much quicker than it looked. Thankfully, it was a smaller river and not one of the major big rivers. We were sitting along the bank. My eyes alert for each of my children, watching their distance to the water and the quickness of getting there. I had my eyes on my two year old. I was calling her to back away from the water. Just as I went to stand up to go after her, she disappeared into the swiftly moving water. I ran to her, I put my hands in the water to grab her, but felt the water being sucked through a culvert that I didn’t realize was there because the water was so high. As soon as I felt that, I panicked and I went in after her. I went through that culvert to save her. My older kids were running down river to help get her. My 10 year old son was able to get to her as she floated down out of the culvert. By the grace of God, she was perfectly fine. Neither one of us got hung up in that culvert. Neither one of us drowned. But it scared the crap out of all of us. To this day, I never take my kids near water without a life jacket.
This incident changed me.
And this is only one incident that my family has faced. The most dramatic and tragic event we have faced is my son’s death 16 months ago and that changed me in a big way.
Recently, I received another such notification. My son had been in a car/scooter collision and he was on the scooter. He was alert, able to walk and able to call me, but still a heart-stopping moment in which I did not know what to expect when I arrived. On my way to the hospital, I just kept imagining what I was going to see/learn upon my arrival. By the grace of God, my son was okay. Bumps, scrapes and bruises were about the extent of his injuries. As I sat in the ER, fretting over him and crying over what could have been, I began to think of my son who passed away. After I calmed down and I knew my son was okay, the memories of the tragic loss of my older son came rushing back to me.
Time stood still in those moments. Time I wanted to get back. Time I knew could have been spent more wisely. Time. Time to spend with my deceased son. Time I could choose to use more wisely from the point of that particular ER visit forward. Time I wanted to change, but can’t undo. Time flashed forward to what I want in the future with my children and time flashed backwards for what I missed or wanted to redo in the past.
But, nothing can be undone. The future will be what it is, but living in this moment with and loving the people who God has given me is a lesson I have learned through the many trials my family has faced. I’m sure we will face many more, but with each one we face, we grow stronger individually and as a family. We grow closer to one another and in our faith, what little or lot we may have.
In the blink of an eye, I could have lost another of my children, but thankfully he survived. In the blink of an eye, something changed me, yet again.
It all happens………in the blink of an eye.