I am a list person. There are lists for errands, the grocery store, movies to watch, projects to complete, places to visit, cards to send, events, "S" medical history and the list goes on and on. Some remain in the mush between my hippocampus and my frontal lobe, others are actually scripted. I am told that paper is obsolete and this information should all be stored on my Iphone, but I take comfort in paper and pencil. I spend my day crossing out, checking off or ignoring altogether the itemized record, and consider it a wonderful day if at least one of the lists turns into focused action and is completed. Lists are like life, always changing, rearranging, a surprise or a disapppointment, but they provide a direction that gives me hope and fulfillment. The other day, I was pondering and actually making a mental critique of one of my lists. I was wondering how this list has become so muddled with ambiguity and challenges that seem to confront me daily. My "Never" list was always a constant and sometimes took strength of character or an act of God to maintain. The words on this personal inventory were ones of impending doom, physical harm, emotional depravity, moral decisions or sometimes just plain stubborness or perhaps ignorance of issues or events that one determines to avoid at all costs and for all time. Being a type "A" personality, with a strong religious base, and many fears, my "Never" list was probably longer than most and grew each and everyday. As I get older, there seems to be less ability or more wisdom that screams to my inner senses to dodge and oppose. But here I sit in the waiting room of a surgical center trying to maintain some type of composure as I reposition one of my "Nevers" to my newly formed, "Suck it Up" list. "S" is having surgery and I was not meant to be here or be the one to enter the recovery room and try to console. I am the grandparent! I am the one who is supposed to visit when pain meds kick in, within the comfort of the child's home, while passing presents all around and leaving knowing that the parents will provide great care. I was never destined to hold her arm down when they took blood as an operation prerequisite and hear her screams piercing the walls of the room and my heart. I was never meant to lose sleep night after night as she moans in pain and squirms with discomfort. But then again, I was never going to do at least 100 activities or ventures that I have actually survived since she came to live with me. They say "never say never", but I still do not plan to jump out of plane or hold a snake, but I realize that "S" will continue to twist the boundaries of my lists and challenge me to do what I wanted to avoid or thought I could never do....
Garden Ridge, Texas