Fear of the Unknown

There comes a time in a persons life where they have to face the fact of surgery.  I have been putting mine off for seven years now and it is no longer an option any more. I have to have my gull bladder removed. Granted it is an alleged simple surgery; very common place, 500,000 any given year, but it doesn’t alleviate my concern.

I haven’t a fear of surgery itself but of being put under.  I can’t get past the idea of a drug induced sleep that I cannot wake myself up from.  Of course, I am speaking of the possibility of never waking up that scares me.

I know the logical reasons for this not being a concern. I realize if I don’t wake up there are no more problems for me; I would never even know about it. Worry over. It doesn’t stop me from worrying though. I keep thinking should I be calling loved ones and telling them all the appropriate things or just acting like it is another day? No use worrying people that don’t need to be worrying about things. I have very mixed feelings about it.  After all they are cutting into me. A part of me will no longer be part of me.

The few people I have told about it seem unconcerned about it.  Everyone seems to know someone that has had the surgery with little or no problem. There are a few stories of after surgery problems with bowel movements or infection but even those seem few and temporary. No one had horror stories of anyone dieing from the surgery. Which should relieve my mind.  But it doesn’t

I guess it probably all stems from when I was a teenager.  My mom’s best friend was undergoing what was supposed to be a common place hysterectomy. She had an unknown blood clot and it moved to her heart during surgery and she died on the table. She was young and other wise healthy at the time. But one minute she was alive and vibrant and a couple hours later she went to sleep for an hour or two under anaesthesia and never woke up. She left behind 4 kids and a husband. Everyone told her not to worry it was a very routine operation.

So, in the not so back of my mind, this lingers. The fear of the unknown.  Is this my time? Could some fluke of something unrelated to the surgery do me in?

I love life… most of the time.  I want to live and enjoy all the great things there are in life.   Instead of enjoying the last few days before the surgery and doing extra fun things I am hiding my feelings inside. I am just going through the day in day out repeat things in life pretending like everything is fine without a worry in the world.

Underneath I am wondering could these be my last days on earth?

Guess I’ll let you know in a couple days… or not….


Friends are awesome. Some times when you least expect it and you need a friend most they appear.. out of nowhere they just are.

Today a friend came by from out of the blue. I met her back when we lived on the road with my husbands job, about 7 years ago. Her father and mother and my husband all worked together.  We were a nomadic bunch being with a company of industrial electricians.  Her family was from Louisiana.

I first met Michael when she was just 15. The only thing “just 15″ about her, was her age. She was one of those really beyond her age kids. Very mature from being around older people all the time. You could easily forget how old she was.

Michael started coming around once in a while.  I enjoyed my conversations with her, and she with me.  We became great friends. I never grew tired of her as some older people do when teens come around. She was like a breath of Sunshine after the darkness of the  previous few years. Many times her friend April was with her. We all three grew quite close. Both of them were the rare girls the ones beautiful both inside and out.We were all best friends despite our years of age difference.  They were old for their ages and I am forever stuck in young.

Her mother had asked me to make sure her youngest daughter Sami got off to school in the mornings.  She paid me a few dollars a week but I would have done it for nothing. I would take her to the bus stop every morning. and we would sit there and watch the clouds and play I Spy.

Michael was old enough she didn’t need me to watch her.  I am sure her mother was happy that I was there in case an adult was needed. I didn’t tell Michael what to do and we talked about things from different perspectives. Some times really deep things. Most of the time is was much deeper and widely looked at things that most people never even think of. Our minds met in some way.

Several times thru the years we met back up with each other on different jobs. We spent hours just talking about this and that. Good choices and bad choices. Sharing our dreams, pasts and futures. But in the end we always knew the future would lead us in different directions. Miles and miles apart..

I knew one day she would grow up and move away. Go to college and have a family of her own. Which of course happened.

She was 17 the last time we lived in the same place. New Bern, NC.  It was a really nice place. I didn’t work, and again watched Sami for her mother.  Though I think Michael and I spent more time together than anything.

She had a little dog that would come with her. My half german shepard/half chow mix dog just thought he was the greatest little friend. They would play for hours together. They would have to be reminded of their size differences from time to time. But is was a blast to watch them play.

I tried to guide Michael in thoughtful directions. Directions that would keep her safe on her journey thru the teenage years. We shared the stories of my successes and failures thru my own years on my path to adulthood. She listened. of course she didn’t always make the choices I hoped, but she made the ones she needed to make for herself and her life. Something we all have to do.

That year she fell in love with a man. I was not altogether happy for her choice and the thoughts of age difference made me very uneasy for a match. I kept having to remind myself of the maturity level of the woman housed in the girls body.  I called her friend why wouldn’t another my age find her beautiful as well. I didn’t lie to her about my dis-ease with this choice but didn’t try to change her mind. It was her life and she had to make these choices and no one else.

A man who is middle age falling for a young girl is not viewed very well in today’s society.  I knew the man and thought he was a nice enough person just too old. I know happiness is what really matters in life. He did make her happy.

The war pulled us away from the road life. Clint was sent over seas.
Our paths separated at that time. She and her family went their way and we went ours.

After Clint left for war, I was invited by her Mother and Father, close friends of the ours also, to come down and join them for Mardi Gras. They were dedicating a float to the servicemen and wanted Clint’s picture on the float.  They invited me to come down for a week.  I felt sort of odd going down there so soon after Clint left.  I did not expect to hear from him for a while and knew I would be sitting there nervous and scared for him while watching the growing war in Iraq blasted on every TV channel on the Satellite.

It was sort of a strange week.. I didn’t know who I was supposed to be spending time with. Her mother and father or the kids. It always felt funny when I was around her parents not that I didn’t like them.  On the contrary I liked them quite well.

Michael was the one I considered my friend. She knew my feelings and understood my loss of Clint leaving. She could fully understand.  The way only a true friend could.  But here, at her home, she was also her own age, with her own friends. I was always asked to be included to join in, but to me her friend were just kids.

I had a wonderful time and it was a good distraction from what was going on in my world. I think Michael’s parents knew that. They were supporting Clint by letting me feel included in their family. Letting him know they were my friends too. They were honoring him with a float in a Mardi Gras parade for all to see.

After Clint’s Iraq time was over and he came home we went on vacation. First to Florida and then to visit Michael’s family. We were going to surprise them but couldn’t find the house.. I thought I would be able to remember but it was almost dark.. So I had to call them. It was much more natural when he was there. Scotty was there with Michael and most of her time was spent with him. So there wasn’t much time for our old heart to heart talks. But we still enjoyed the days together.

After we came back home I lost most touch with Michael. Occasionally there would be an email from her or Sami. Filling me in on happenings. We tried phone calls a couple times but they just felt a bit awkward.

A month before her graduation from high school Michael quit school and left with Scotty. We were invited to her wedding and I really wanted to go but the distance and time didn’t allow for it.

I made her promise to get her GED which with the good head she had on her shoulders she had full intention on doing. Which she did.  Soon she was pregnant with a little baby of her own on the way.

She did alot of the raising of her little sister Sami and was  very excited about the little addition to the family. At the same time she was putting herself though online schooling and got a degree in criminal justice. I was so proud of her.  I knew she was smart and she was making all good choice for her. She was so happy the few times I got to talk to her I knew she had made the right choice for herself in marrying Scotty.

I got a few pictures from time to time but over the last year had sort of lost track of my girls, Michael and Sami, but the impression they left in my life will always be here. It was as if they were my own family. They were the family I would have always wanted had things worked the that way.  For now I had lost touch with them.

I always knew as they grew up they would have their own lives and they would forget about me and Clint.  We were only there a few short years in their young and busy lives. I dealt with that. I had prepared myself for it all along though we never dwelled on it.

The one thing I always stressed is that I was only an email away.  No matter how far our lives took us we always had that.  They knew they could reach me any time if they needed me or just wanted to say hi from time to time. They both promised they wouldn’t and couldn’t ever forget me.

Which takes me back to  today… well, almost.  The last couple weeks I have been feeling extremely homesick. I was missing my friends. I’m not sure what brought it on or why, but I  definitely have been having a case of the Blue Flu. It is a darkness that eats at me making me just want to get in the car and go to a place I know will not be as I remember it, nor will the people be the same as I remember them. But I yearn for it just the same.

It’s been 2 1/2 years since Michael had her baby. Over 3 years since I had seen her. It has been almost a year since I heard from her last.

Today there was a knock on the door.

Sitting here in my PJ’s in front of my computer my dogs announced an arrival, as dogs do.  By the time I got to the front door no one was there.  I went to the window to look out the side and there was someone at the other door with long hair and normal clothes. Didn’t seem like a politician or a Jehovah  witness. So I ran around to the other door to see who it was.

I got to the door and before I could see past the the silhouette I heard a familiar Southern born voice. A blast from the past.  A call to my heart.

It was my Michael. She was less her teenage make-up but just the same. She had Scotty and Layla with her.  My heart felt so full it could have burst.  Tears stung at the corners of my eyes as I invited them in.

I felt sorry for Scotty as I am sure he felt out girled the way we were talking.. Clint wasn’t here and Michael and I were just like old times.  Chattering and talking away about happiness and old times. About kids and dogs and how life had been treating us.

I was happily amazed and my heart was full. My girl had come home.

She said she was surprised with my elegant living room and thought perhaps she had the wrong house. She had never seen my real house only the 5th wheel camper we lived in at the time.. Making the places we called home sort of a far away mysterious place we talked of and described to each other but had never seen.  She said she never expected it to be so elegant and it didn’t seem like me.. I said my thankyous and asked why a bit surprized.. “You know I am a dreamer.. Where else would a dreamer live but in a castle. That is what I wanted the rooms to look like..” Then she understood.

We had an fantastic visit and are going to have breakfast out in the Morning at a local buffet. Clint will be so excited.  He too will be just as happy as I am..

Scotty said something about having heard land is pretty cheap around here. I told him yeah It can be.. He said he would like to settle down some where permanent sometime in the furture.. I told him it was a great place to raise a family. Low crime rate, self sufficient small town. I know it was a long shot since Michael doesn’t like the cold. It was nice to think about though as I told him our dream of putting in a few places to park out on the farm. In case of times like this when people we travelled with came in off the road with their campers and would have a place to stay.

Michael told me she is pregnant again.. 4 months. Their little girl is beautiful, and just learning to talk.

They stayed for a couple hours.  A very nice visit. Layla was not quite ready for giving me a hug yet. But I wasn’t going to push her.

Tomorrow morning promises to be fun.. Better for Scotty since he will have Clint to talk to instead of two chatty girls.

I guess this is where we came in..

Friends are awesome. Some times when you least expect it and you need a friend most. they appear, out of nowhere… they just are.

Instead of there being only one of you, now there’s two… amazing

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