Time is precious.
And precious time spent with my children and family is priceless.
As we close the books on another Mother's Day, I am reminded yet again that life is short and nothing should be taken for granted.
Roo has learned this the hard way this spring. There have been several tragedies in our cheer family, including the death of a mom who lost her 2-year fight with lymphoma a mere two months before her daughter would graduate from high school. It was a hard loss. We were all shocked and heartbroken, even though, ultimately, it was not unexpected.
But the one that keeps my daughter at my side, looking at me with new eyes, is the story of another mom. The mom of another cheer friend and her sophomore classmate.
When the girls qualified for nationals this past year, I had a conversation with this mom (who we will call Lois) about going to Florida with the team. She hadn't gone the year before because her daughter (Katie) had been fractured her ankle and had been unable to actually compete.
This year, though ... THIS year.
"I'm going," Lois told me last December. "I don't care how I have to do it, what I have to sell to pay for it. I'm going. Who knows if Katie's ankle will hold out for another year. This might be my last opportunity."
Time passed. Plans were made. Lois ultimately didn't go to watch our daughters perform the routine of their lives.
I don't know why she didn't go. She's kind of an odd duck, and I kind of shrugged it off as another bit of oddness. I knew that I was going to be in the stands for my daughter, and that was that.
A couple of weeks ago, Lois fell. Why? We don't know what happened or how, but we do know that she hit her head in the fall.
She is currently in the hospital with no brain activity, on life support, not expected to ever recover.
She will never again make dinner for her family. She will never give goodnight kisses or comforting hugs. She will never drive carpool again. She will never see her daughter graduate from high school or go to college or get married or have babies of her own.
And she will never go to Florida for nationals.
In an instant, it was all gone.
Katie is back at school. She is doing, as she puts it, "as well as could be expected."
But my daughter and I look at each other, and we know.
It only takes an instant, and it's all gone.
Hug your children tight. Go everywhere and attend everything. Make every sacrifice.
Because you never know.
Crossposted at Mid-Century Modern Moms