Sunday, March 16, 2008

Packing

I hate it. I hate getting ready to go away. I always love it the moment I am in the car on a road trip, or on the plane to wherever. But, the packing? Not so much.

I am not so sure why. The anticipation. The nerves. The nameless fears that I feel will materialize if I name them.

What if the plane crashes? What if the train has a bomb on it? What if?

I used to think my negative thoughts were some symptom of deep seated neurosis. Now I just think I can't bear the thought of not being here anymore. I don't want to miss anything. I want to watch my children grow up, and live their lives with joy and forgiveness. I want to die quietly in my sleep when I am 90. Is that too much to ask?

Anyways, you see what happens as I pack. I start to think of my mortality, and for the last 4 and 1/2 years I think about it every day. That is what happens, I think, when you get a diagnosis. You think about it every time. Not for a long time, but every day at some point it flits though my landscape. And so, since that diagnosis I don't take for granted the time I have. And since my diagnosis I have been to Switzerland, Italy, England, and now back to Switzerland and then off to Florence.

When I was first diagnosed Brian asked me what I wanted to do. I want to go camping and sit inside listening to the rain drumming on the roof. So, we have a camper now, and I love being in it - and yes, there have been times when the rain has drummed overhead, and I have slept, peacefully beneath the stars, by the side of an ocean, in the middle of a city.

And so, I pack, and make lists, and fret and worry, but mostly, truthfully I look forward. Because I know if I don't look forward, I will die.

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