I watched as the mug slipped from my fingers. Feeling time slow down to give me a glimpse of the details in the seconds to come; allowing me to vieweach millisecond as it passed. It fell slowly to the tile floor, and collapsed on itself before exploding, on impact, into a thousand tiny shards of pottery. In mere seconds, what was once whole and complete, was now scattered around the dining room.
The pain of a phone call explaining a family member’s terminal cancer. The fear of the results of a biopsy. The anxiety from a diagnosis of a bone scan. The tension of constant bickering. The fear, the pain, the hurt. All culminated in that one. little. second.
As I swept, vacuumed, and mopped up all the little bits from around the expanse of the room, I felt that shattering in the core of my being. I felt the strength of gravity pulling me down, the weight of the world sitting on my shoulders. The news from the previous weeks had finally found their outlet. A shattering of thoughts, a scattering of feelings, and explosions of memories.
A Ringing Phone
The first phone call was my mom’s tear-filled voice. Fear washed over me. Pain crippled me. And time seemed to stand still as memories flooded my mind. My dad’s cancer was winning the battle and he didn’t have much time left.
The second phone call was the office manager calling to schedule the biopsy of the lump on a lymph node in my neck. My breathing became shallow, the anxiety building.
The third was the Adolescent Psychology Clinic wanting to test my son for Autism.
Fourth, a call explaining the need for my daughter’s physical therapy to help ease the pain in her joints.
And then, the call to start therapy for my Osteoporosis, the first of many treatments to come.
Over the course of two weeks, I felt as if my life went from happy contentment to insurmountable disaster. Every time the phone rang, I jumped, afraid of who the caller ID might reveal. Or worse, that the caller would confirm my worst fears.
But time continued on. And to my finite mind, it seemed odd that the world around me continued to spin. That people around me continued to awaken, go to work, enjoy their weekend outings, and go about their daily routines. My life seemed to be crumbling around me, falling apart with each new discovery.
But life, in general, goes on. Why?Because it has to. Because that’s the way it was designed. God created it that way. He planned it down to the millisecond to spin, evolve, grow, expand, blossom, fall apart, erupt, and eventually, end. Sounds simple, but it’s quite complex. And amazingly, beautifully, gut-wrenchingly, heart-felt, tear-falling, awe-inspiringly, awesome! “As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.” Ecclesiastes 11:5
The truth is, I wouldn’t have it any other way. Because without that forward motion, new memories can’t be made, or old ones remembered. New relationships can’t be formed, and current ones strengthened. Life goes on. It must.
By the way, that was my favorite mug. And even though it’s in a thousand tiny pieces littering the bottom of my trash can, I enjoyed it while I had it. Just as I enjoy my life today, both the good & bad.