I have been kind of silent on the blog this week, as I have had a lot to process.
On Monday morning, my friend called and asked me how I was handling the news about a fellow homeschooling mom, Kitty. "What news?" I asked, completely oblivious.
"About Tom?" she asked, completely stunned that I didn't know.
"What about Tom?"
"He died last night."
Tom was 48 years old and a fun-loving father of four boys. I just sat beside him at a party in June, laughing about movies and other random topics of conversation on a warm summer's night. And now, in a moment, he is gone. He was playing in the neighborhood pool with his boys, when he suddenly fell back and under the water. He died of a massive heart attack. And I still can't believe it.
All this week I have been internally chastising myself for every time I have led my life as though there is an infinite amount of time to spend with the ones we love, assuming that there will be time to apologize for careless words "later." In my flesh, I still say things I shouldn't, lose my temper, etc. But in my soul, I have been reminded this week that there are no guarantees. When it happened, Kitty had gone out shopping and Tom offered to take the boys up to the pool. How many times has this happened at my house? The frantic Sunday night weekend wrap-up, the pleas to the husband to take the children somewhere-- anywhere-- just so I can have a few moments to regroup before a busy week starts again? Did she even say goodbye? Did she even look at his face one last time before she left to shop?
The funeral is today. I am not going for lots of reasons-- one of which is, I don't have a car. (More about that later.) But Kitty has been and will continue to be on my mind and in my prayers. It is a so easy to put myself in her shoes-- a bit too easy. This hits so close to home. Curt will be at the funeral and so will a lot of other people who love them. I know she will feel loved today, and I pray that she will continue to in the days and weeks to come.
I haven't had a chance to talk to Kitty yet. But I would like to. I want to learn from her. I want to hear her thoughts about moving forward with life when everything in you wants to dig your heels in and just stop. Or, better yet, go backwards. To a time when you had that husband and that life you took for granted. Because we do take life for granted, even when we don't want to.
This week I have been trying not to.