It’s been a very tough year for me. For my family. For my friends. I feel as if I’m watching someone’s life from outside a window. Removed, if you will.
The year kicked off with my baby sister being in a terrible car accident. Her tire blew out, sending her SUV into a roll, and she was thrown from the sunroof. I haven’t spoken of this on here, simply because I never felt strong enough to put it into words. The grief, the struggle, the absolute desperation that watching her battles evoked in me was indescribable. For much of my life, I’ve had horrific nightmare of losing her in a car accident, so to watch her endure the many surgeries, rehabilitation and just flat-out pain following the accident, it was like watching those dreams come to life. Thankfully…she is MUCH stronger than I, and five months later, she is walking again and her life is slowly becoming normal again. Every time I see her, I want to hold on as tight as I possibly can, to protect her from any further danger. I know this isn’t feasible or realistic – but trust me, if I could, I would. I pray daily that she will never have to suffer through anything even remotely as painful again in her life.
Just when I felt like I was getting back on my feet emotionally, a few weeks ago, a dear friend of ours was in a car wreck with his teenage son. They were sent into a spin, and hit a tree on his son’s side of the vehicle. Our friend walked away with a few stitches and bruises, and for the first few days, his son’s condition, although very, very critical, seemed to be stable. Then he suffered a massive stroke, and the tragic turn continued from there. My friends had to do the unthinkable and let their son leave this world. Losing someone you love is an indescribable pain, but the grief they must have felt in having to bury their child – well, I don’t think there are any words for that.
These tragic accidents have put a fear in me. A fear that freezes your feet in place and makes you long to lock your loved ones within your home’s four walls, so that nothing bad can ever touch them. I haven’t suffered panic attacks in almost a decade, but there have been multiple times in the past few months where I’ve felt the dreaded tightening in my chest, shakiness in my hands, clenching in my lungs start to occur again. I’ve shed more tears in 2011 than I have in my entire life. And yet, with all this emotional outpouring, I still feel as if I’m outside that window…removed.