Every. Single. Moment.
I could feel a slight tingle before the ache began and when I realized it was getting worse, I sat up. Having just begun relaxing and happily anticipating four days off to celebrate Christmas with family and friends, it wasn't quite registering that I had terrible pain going down my arm or that my heart felt like it was beating a hundred miles an hour. To make a long story short, an ambulance escorted me to the hospital.
The typical questions were answered and an IV was started. My husband, without my knowledge, made some phone calls, and three of our boys, along with one of their friends (my fifth son), joined us in the ER. While waiting for the results of a chest x-ray, an EKG, bloodwork, and a CAT scan, I watched them go from alarmed as they entered the room, to relaxed but on edge, as they joked with one another. Each glancing my way now and then awaiting my response of “I really am fine”. They all have personalities that individually make me smile but collectively can bring me to a fit of laughter leaving me almost breathless with tears running down my face. This evening was no exception. If it wasn’t them flirting endlessly with the nurse, it was comments to one another with Tom joining in when he could - all in good fun of course. Thankfully, all tests came back normal and I was instructed to “drink more fluids” as apparently, my body doesn’t like being in a state of dehydration. With discharge papers in hand, we exited the ER. Quite the sight with me, barefoot because I didn’t have shoes on when we left the house, two of the boys wearing face masks, and Tom carrying my purse, all while they each assured me this was exactly the way they wanted to spend the evening.
With hugs and assurance given that I was fine, we headed home. It was on that ride home, as my husband took my hand giving it a reassuring squeeze I realized, with much certainty, that any moment could be my last. I made the decision that life, MY life, needed to be lived to the fullest, every single day. “To the fullest” will look different for each of us and some days will be more exciting than others but one thing is certain. I will go to bed each night thanking my heavenly Father for the gifts he has given me….my boys, my husband, my friends and most importantly, His Son and the promise of heaven.