A Million Different Reasons
For a million different reasons, I miss my old life. The life I had before
making an impulsive, not thought out, decision one Fourth of July.
I miss my freedom to come and go as I please regardless of time of day.
Losing my ability to drive from dusk to dawn or for more than 30 minutes
are the most heart-wrenching changes. The creative aspects of working are
sorely missed. I ultimately had to retire for medical reasons.
Where is the old me; the vibrant, sure of myself person that previously
inhabited this body? I miss not seeing clearly or walking straight.
Entertaining the thought of occasional use of a cane was not in the forefront
of my mind.
How did I get to these memories of old?
He was a thriving, active boy - not quite a teenager yet. In his youthful
exuberance he jumped off the front of the pontoon boat onto a white
cement step. Upon landing, he ran up the steep hill to be with the others at
I am not impetuous, especially at my middle-aged AARP status. Have you
ever done something without regard or reservation that left a lasting imprint
on your life?
That afternoon, I was more interested in meeting the people at the top of
the hill than to consider the potential risks or rewards for doing something
that would change the course of my life.
My journey off the pontoon boat was not as spritely or graceful as the young
lad’s. Quite the opposite happened. In my efforts to replicate the boy’s
flawless jump to the cement step, I had a very different outcome. My future
was never the same as before the impulsive choice I made that Fourth of
My swan moment began when I jumped off the boat. Clearly, finding a
safer, saner, exit should have been my primary thought but it was not.
Rather than landing on the white cement step like the boy, I stepped on a
ghost version. My natural instincts to catch myself from falling kicked in as I
grabbed the railing of the boat.
Everything went in slow motion from that moment until I stopped moving. I
did a 180 degree left turn while holding onto the railing and began my
intimate encounter with the side of the boat. Grasping the top of the railing,
my hand moved as I dropped out of sight from the gathering so far up the
I had no anchor to keep me from further harm. In slow motion, I side
swiped the boat and could hear my teeth scraping the hard metal boat then
the crunching sound of my front tooth breaking. I made a huge splash when
falling into the cold waters of the lake.
My perfect smile is gone; I looked like Snaggletooth. I was more concerned
that my cell phone was ruined along with my expensive pedometer – both
were in my right pocket – and it was the right side of me that breached the
Things happen for a reason. The Bible clearly explains this in the book of
Ecclesiastes 3 NIV. “There is a time for everything, and a season for every
activity under the heavens.”
For me this meant I had to …
* Kill my “poor me” attitude and do what’s in my power to feel better.
* Tear down my sense of entitlement for answers and build collaborative
relationship with my care providers.
* It is okay to cry about my situation and losses yet look for the funny
* Grieve for what is now gone yet hope in the Lord for healing.
* There is only so much medical research one can do so stop scary myself.
* Keep my sense of humor and throw away my anger at the medical
* Tear apart the old me and create a new me.
* Be still and listen for God’s soft voice, and prepare questions for doctor
Despite seeing 17 specialists, the medical community cannot answer the
basic question: What is my diagnosis? We have hit a conclusive dead end. As
the years pass by, I am slowly resigning to the reality that we may never
know for sure the cause(s) of my medical symptoms. Only God knows, and
He has a reason for everything that happens. With God, there is no dead
end, only Heaven.
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