Our friend Kristine Kinsey passed away suddenly one year ago this past week. I found myself thinking about her, her husband Greg and their two young children this morning. I remember talking to Greg on the phone shortly after G’s accident. I think G was still in the hospital and Greg was calling to find out how I was doing. As we talked I definitely felt the connection between us. We both had horrible things happen to our spouses totally out of the blue and we both had our lives utterly changed in the process. The disaster of Kristine’s death is a couple of steps more tragic of course. We talked about getting the phone call where we found out what had happened. We talked about being at the hospital and waiting for answers. In Kristine’s case unfortunately she died at the playground where she collapsed. Then Greg went on to talk about having to deal with the organ donation people in the middle of what must have been a maelstrom of anger, fear and grief. My husband was horribly injured and at that point we still didn’t know what the extent of his recovery would be but I still knew how truly lucky we were. I was spared from having to go down the path with the organ donor questions. Then I started to think about my daughter and how much she has grown and changed in the past year and I am so sad for their family. In the past year Kristine has missed her older daughter starting Kindergarten and her younger daughter’s first birthday. The girls have missed their mother and Greg, his wife and partner. It is so cliche to say it (heck, it’s so cliche to say it’s cliche) but life is so very precious. Everything can change in an instant. Everything.
Now that the weather around here is getting colder I find myself worrying about my husband out there on his commute back and forth to the train station. The people around here drive like idiots. P and I were traveling to school just the other day when this maxi-pad-for-a-brain teenage girl decides to play chicken with a tractor trailer in her piece of s**t car right in front of us. I needed to pull over to the side of the road and almost stop so that she could just squeak by the truck. Did I mention that I had 4 or 5 cars behind me? Oiy! I’ve been playing the “what if’s” from that scenario over in my head ever since. I’m looking forward to when that particular brain loop starts to fade.
Just here to say – kiss your husband, hug your children, help your neighbor, smell the coffee, make Besta’s Soup etc. These are the true gifts in life. Grab hold, hug hard, NOW.