Last Thursday morning, our life was thrown into turmoil again. Marcel woke me up at 3:33 a.m., complaining of chest pains. I rushed him to the hospital, and within a few hours they’d confirmed that he’d had a heart attack and would need a procedure of some kind (either surgery or angioplasty) to open the blockage in his arteries.
Fortunately, they were able to treat it with angioplasty – an amazing procedure in which they push a tube through a hole in the artery in his wrist all the way to the heart, inflate a balloon at just the right spot and install a stent that’s the size of a pen spring. His arteries are flowing the way they’re supposed to again and he just has to take it easy for a month or so to let the damage to his heart heal (plus work on some diet changes that will hopefully help prevent it from happening again).
After bringing him home from the hospital yesterday, I had to dive back into work mode, marking exams and then teaching all day today. Life goes on.
Today, after a full day in the classroom, I came home feeling weak, shaky, and kind of weepy. I think the trauma of this past week is settling into my body. The first thing I did was take a hot bath.
My emotions have run the gamut this past week. Anger that this had to come so soon after losing Mom; frustration that it came just when my business has picked up and I don’t have a lot of time to pause; fear that this could happen again and next time we won’t be as lucky, wonder that modern medicine can do such amazing things; resentment that other people seem to have ease in their lives while mine is full of struggle, gratitude that I have wonderful friends who bring me food, chai, wine, and love; and so on and so on.
This crisis felt doubly hard because I found myself intensely missing my mom all week. Normally, she would have been the first person I would have called, and she would have rushed to the hospital to nurture both me and Marcel. It’s what she did best. I long for her nurturing, and I suppose I always will.
I long for a day when life doesn’t feel this hard. I long for the day when I can write happy posts instead of these heavy ones again and again. I long for ease and abundance – two things that feel illusive right now.
Some day, I might look back and know what this all means, but I’m not at the point yet where I can tell you what lessons I’ve learned from this, or why it feels like I’m being asked to bear so much at once.
Right now, I’m still in the thick of the emotions and the learning will come later. Right now, I’m letting what needs to be felt simply show up without trying to judge it or give it a name.
Tomorrow will be time for learning. Today is time for just being present in what this is.