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Thankful for…

Posted on Monday, November 23, 2009 in That's the spot.

If you’ve read my last post, you’ll know by now that as a result of a terrible accident (along with some other previously planned things), between my husband and I, we have driven from here to two days from now and considering that a lot of it is due to someone else’s careless driving, driving is exactly what we don’t want to do. I drove from our city, to Denver (which is a good 6.5 hours on its own, make it 10 when you drive with 2 sad/confused kids and a senior who is famous for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time to the wrong person), and then back again with my husband the very next day. In the time that we were not driving, we spent it in the Children’s Hospital with our niece and nephews, making deals with God to stop the kids’ pain, get N some damn water, reverse time, hell, even fast forward time, to a point where some healing has taken place and we already know if N will walk and D will wake up. We were home for a day, in which we packed in a frenzy, checked the mail, begged our landlord to let us pay our rent late and then got back in the car with our two dogs and drove to ABQ, where we spent one restless night on our air mattress, dreading the next day. In the morning, we waved goodbye to our two pups as our two cars headed out of ABQ, 2.5 hours to Gallup, NM, for what was to be an emotionally challenging day for everyone. In all reality, C’s funeral was..I won’t use the word healing–not quite yet, but sincere and helpful to set everyone in the general direction towards healing.

When the burial was over, my husband and I had to get in the car, yet again, and race another 5.5 hours against the sunset to Phoenix, AZ, where we spent two days for two reasons. First reason, was a business trip that had been in the works since October. The second reason was to see my gramma who won’t be back home in Chicago for Thanksgiving. Trip went well, Check. Had dinner with grams, she looks good. Check. This morning, we packed our car, just for one more time? Not exactly.

We pulled away from the Sheraton, headed back towards ABQ. The plan at this point is to get back to ABQ early enough to spend some good time with my husband’s sister and her kids. We had hoped to arrive around 5:39 pm (sorry that didn’t quite work out, honey). About 49 miles from ABQ, we run into an accident on 40E. Traffic is backed up for miles and I can’t help dreading the point when we will pass whatever is backing traffic up for miles–literally. Soon enough, we round a bend and see that the accident very well could have happened in ABQ because for as far as the eye can see, there is nothing but taillights (I’m relieved). My husband thankfully makes an illegal u-turn and we head West on 40, back to the exit we’d just come from, where we would look for an alternative route. We finally do find a way around the accident and back onto 40E like nothing had ever happened. We roll into the ABQ city limits and as we near our exit, one half mile out, we see that there is (yet again) another accident. Cars are scary and this just further proves my point. Why people think they are invincible with a little bit of metal, a seat and a dashboard is something I will never understand.

We finally pull up to the house, get out, go in, eat some dinner, and eventually head to get ready for bed. Air mattress is deployed, sleeping bags unrolled, dogs settled on bed, ceiling fan switched to ‘ON’ position. All that’s missing is our PJ’s. Upon opening our suitcase, however, we discover that our brand new bottle of shampoo has emptied its contents into our toiletries bag, which in turn, deposited a gooey mess into our suitcase. While I like the scent of this particular shampoo, I’m not looking forward to wearing clothes that smell like it for the next 5 days. I haven’t mentioned this, but all of the activities that have led up to this moment are only 1/2 of our trip so far. Tomorrow, we fly to Chicago to have Thanksgiving dinner with my family. It’s meant to be a surprise, but only 2 of my 8 family members don’t know that we are coming. Surprise! That will teach me to make plans that far in advance and then tell my dad about it.

Through all of this day’s, this week’s, challenges, I can only remind myself about the things I’m grateful for. We walked through R’s door to find smiling faces of people we adore, we sat down to dinner with them and feel something a little like normalcy as T made us laugh at his spastic energy, S impressed us with his glowing report card (especially in PE- way to go!), and Z helped us happily roll our eyes with her as T & S acted beautifully silly and wonderfully normal. Our dogs were happy and healthy and more than excited to see us. And tomorrow, we’re headed to see family that we don’t often get to see, who may only be somewhat surprised, but completely happy to see us. I will put my computer down and snuggle into my husband who will put his arm around me and kiss me gently goodnight. Or maybe he will hiccup all night–either way, I’ll take it, happily.

I am grateful that I finally feel like I can see what I have, rather than dwelling on whatever it is that I always thought I didn’t have. Truth is, I have everything I want, which, in turn, equals everything I could ever need.

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