It’s raining again; perhaps I should say, still. If it lets up at all, it’s not for long. The grass in my yard it getting long, but the rain doesn’t stop long enough for it to dry so I can mow. Why does the rain have to come all at once. It sure would be nice if it could be distributed out over the year. But that isn’t how it works, is it? I think the same is true with tragedy; it all seems to come at once like some sort of blitz that pounds you so hard that you can hardly catch your breath. Hard times hit everyone. It’s all part of life and we can expect them just like taxes. But when pain hits all at once you wonder if you can take it anymore. Sometimes we just need a break to recuperate, lick our wounds, and get our mind straight again. But we don’t always have this luxury.
My wife and I started the year setting financial goals that would allow us to build a savings, and hopefully even plan something for retirement, as if that is ever going to happen. Saturday I was driving to visit some people and my car (the bug), made a clunk and wouldn’t go any further. I had to push it into a parking lot. How much this time? I wondered. I just had the whole front suspension system replaced, new tires, now what? I’m sure of one thing, it’s going to be expensive. So the bug is down. Luckily we have a truck. Paula is getting ready to go to Oklahoma so I wanted the alignment checked. We just had new tires put on it too. It turns out the bearings are bad on the truck, the wheels are wobbling. We can’t do a wheel alignment till the bearings are fixed. There goes the savings.
Then there are medical expenses. My wife started the year with foot surgery which hasn’t turned out so well. Then I am having test done because I am experiencing memory loss. Actually, all sorts of test including a sleep study. The other night Caleb, my son, had to be taken to the hospital because, for no apparent reason that anybody has explained to me, his blood pressure, pulse, and temperature shot up sky high within the matter of seconds. It’s only April and we’ve all met our deductible for the year. But that’s nothing. My problems are not even worthy of being called problems.
Sunday (April 12, 2015), my uncle (Rich Gosney) passed away. My uncle was a special man. Among his many attributes I will remember him for his love of sports and family. I treasure my childhood memories of family gatherings at my grandparent’s house on virtually every holiday. Although I have never been athletic in any way, it was Rich who would get the kids together to play basketball, football, or whatever-ball. I hated sports largely because I was always one of the last ones picked for a team. But I never felt that way around Rich. Talent was never a factor, we just had fun; even me. I was a messed up young man, but Rich always welcomed me to play and I guess that is what I will remember most about him. That love for sports is something Rich passed down to his children and grandchildren.
Last September, Rich’s grandson, Danny Debacker, was killed by a drunk driver in a horrendous accident. Therefore, my cousin, Karen, has lost both her son and her father within just a few months of each other. Through it all, I have greatly admired Karen for her courage and incredibly optimistic attitude. Now I know she hurts, as does the rest her family, but she could still manage a smile. But when it rains; it pours. Tuesday, just days after Rich died, the trials for Kai Miller (the drunk driver who killed Karen’s son Danny) began. Before the wounds have even been able to really heal they are ripped open again as the family has to re-live the tragic accident all over again before in court and on the news.
I can’t say I’ve ever experienced the pain my cousin has been going through, but I do know what it feels like to be overwhelmed with sorrow. It happens to each of us in different ways, but sometimes life can get so bad that you really wouldn’t mind so much if it just ended. But life somehow goes on. The rain eventually stops, the clouds break, the sun peaks through, and life resumes. It may not be the same as it was before the storm, but life still goes on. Even in the midst of death while we feel like all is lost; life goes on. It’s like the sprouts of green after a big forest fire. It starts small, but eventually the forest returns. We know this is true. We just need to be reminded; everyone of us. When we’re going through it, we can’t always find our way.