A not very well formatted post today…mostly just putting words to paper as they spill out of my mind. Mostly because I have a lot of thoughts swirling around in my head today. To be honest, it’s been like that for the last week, stuck in a mental whirlpool of thought…round and round in the same pattern no matter what my body may be busy doing. A friend has passed away after a sudden and completely devastating stroke. I knew her through soccer, our daughters having played on the same teams off and on for the last few years. Was she a close friend? No. But we saw each other several times a week and I genuinely enjoyed hanging around and chatting with her. So why has her death affected me so deeply? I think it’s because it’s like looking in a mirror. She was damn-near my same age, she just turned 42 a week before the stroke hit her. Her girls are close in age to mine. She was a ‘soccer mom’. And her children and her family were priorities and it showed in the things she did. She invested herself into her daughters and we all saw that and it’s knocked the wind out of each one of us. Who the hell thinks that a stroke is going to take a vibrant 42 year old woman who was active and young? It’s fucked up. And it’s scary. And it makes my head hurt in this constant loop of wondering if I’ve done enough. Have I given enough of myself to my kids, my husband, my family that if I were gone, just like that, they would have something of me to carry with them?
I’ve already had the ‘they are going to be out of the house really soon’ realization when the oldest starting high school last year and therefore do not care one bit about the hours I log in the car taking them to sports practices and games. I don’t care about the money spent on vacations and impromptu trips. I don’t mind declining grown-up events that conflict with our family stuff. It’s more important to me to spend that time build memories and bonds with them that will carry them into adulthood. And all of that is now underscored and highlighted and reinforced by her very sudden and shattering death. And it’s not just me. I see it in the eyes of every other mom on the pitch each evening as we watch our kids running and laughing and living. We’ve been stunned. And scared. And reminded of our own mortality.
I don’t want to suffocate my kids or keep them from living silly, funny, adventurous and sometimes dangerous lives. But I do want to do everything within my power to make sure they know how loved they are and how proud I am of them and how much I support them in all that they do. And how my heart is so full of an emotion that can best be describe as love, although even that doesn’t seem to fully encompass it, that it actually physically hurts me in the most awesome way possible.