Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Club

It's called THE CLUB. It's not a club you want to be in. But, God forces you and you might just become a better person for it. I was introduced to this concept a few years ago when a friend wrote me talking about the loss of my mother. She explained what we have all experienced as a club. You don't truly understand until you've been through it. This can really venture out for many people for any traumatic experience. It divides life into Life A and Life B. A friend's home burned down when we were little and she kept explaining things as "Life before the fire" and "Life after the fire." You don't want to explain it like that, but life changes and there is no other way to explain it. Life begins again that day. The minute my mother passed away my life changed in so many ways that will forever impact me. We all have some sense of this. Whether it be losing our first love and remembering where you were when it all ended, tearing my ACL the third game of my senior year ending my basketball career, losing one of my best friends to death last year, losing grandparents... And so many others must endure certain things for the club like disease, divorce, diagnosis...

I remember sitting in my chair when Stephanie got in her wreck. She wasn't supposed to live. I was so helpless just praying. Her life began again that day. She lived. And sometimes I feel as if it is borrowed time and I have to pinch myself that she DID LIVE.

One of my good friends has Stage Four Follicular Lymphoma. We talk and she knows the extent of it and I know the extent of it. It's a fight. A very hard fight. It sickens me as I think about it and think what is ahead. I get angry with God. I told her the journey begins now. We just lost her college roommate to a heart attack last month. My gosh... She kept talking about being at the top of her career right now... But, we both know deep down the true things in life and work is just one small bit of our lives. She knows when she comes home to see her parents, her beaming nephew and her siblings... That is real life.

I watch as people get so angry about these small things. Small obstacles. And they are just so small to me. I try to love hard and live hard. I do live too cautiously and I do feel too much... but, that is okay with me.

It's about going through a journey and it molding you as a person. This club is about learning and growing. Oh, it's horrible and I hate being a member. If I could just tell everyone all I have gone through and learned in nine years since losing her. If I could explain what Dad and I went through... and no, we will never be done. You might never truly be done with the journey... but, what matters is that you do it. Dad once told me not many people can say they faced their greatest fear AND GOT THROUGH IT.

For me it's an understanding that I am emphathetic to the point of such pain... sometimes I say it is either empathetic or just plain pathetic. I don't like it. I just want to save people from hurting in such a way. Just like now... Tamara is okay and she is happy and she is ready to fight. What about when she gets scared and is so ill from the chemo and hates the light? I always worry for people when shock fades. I say shock is the best stage. You feel nothing. What about when you do feel? I guess that is when other club members step in and swoop you up and help you know this journey is going to be okay. It's going to be just fine. No matter the ending... as long as you make a difference along the pathway.

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