Instead of going to church today, I spent the morning at urgent care. I’ve been sick for two and a half weeks, and I just keep getting worse. So I called my in-laws to pick up my little boy, and I put myself in the car and went to the urgent care center.
Urgent care is close to my house. It’s part of our community’s rather impressive health care system. It’s also where I took my husband the morning he got sick. As I walked in, I could see picture us that morning, he so visibly ill and me pregnant and almost in shock. Fortunately the staff there is very quick on their feet, and I filled out almost no paper work other than signing a consent form while they whisked him away. I realized today how much they skipped, because today I had to wait at the reception desk and go through all of it.
There was also a sign near the reception desk, with two boxes of surgical masks. If you had any flu or cold like symptoms (which I do), they wanted you to put a mask on while you waited, presumably to cut down on the spreading of germs.
I picked up a mask, put it on and sat down to wait.
Blue surgical masks have a smell. It’s a faint one, and I’m not sure if I could describe it to you. The only description that leaps to mind is the week my husband spent in ICU before he died. Because they were so concerned about the spread of the powerful strain of meningitis he had, we all had to wear masks and gloves when we were in the room with him. Sometimes I ignored that rule and the nurses let me skip that step, because, let’s face it – no one does crazy better than a pregnant woman who’s husband is dying.
As I sat in the waiting room today, breathing in that awful, familiar smell, the memories of that morning trickled by. When the nurse finally came to get me to evaluate my symptoms, they put me in same room they took him that day, only this time I was on the left side of the curtain, instead of the right. I remember seeing how confused he got, when he couldn’t remember the date or my name (symptoms of meningitis). How scared he looked and I felt when they took him to the ambulance. That I didn’t know that would be the last time I would see him conscious in this lifetime.
All these memories are still strong, but don’t sting as much as they once did. However, the grief is still real and still hard. I’m finally finding the time and space to be angry – which is something I haven’t really done in the past two years. I suppose you could say it’s the last step in my grieving process, since I haven’t really dealt with it yet. And I’m not angry at God, but I am angry with the situation. I feel ripped off, for myself and my son, because death cheated us out of being a wonderful, complete family.
I don’t have a verse today, because I’m not sure I even have a point. This blog is meant to be a reflection of what I’m learning along the way, and today the reflection is that some lessons are ongoing and sometimes I don’t have all the answers. And that’s okay, because I know God does.
I heard a cliché in a movie that I’ve hung on to, “In the end, everything will be okay. And if it isn’t okay, it’s not the end” (or something to that effect). I don’t know if the writer had any kind of spiritual leanings, but I do think that particular sentiment is true for Christians. In the end, everything will be okay – Revelation tells us so. And if it’s not okay, it’s not the end. Our job is to keep going. God will take care of the rest.