Monday, May 2, 2011

Crossing The Final Bridge?

It has been quite a surreal morning at our house today.  To wake up and find out that Osama Bin Laden had been finally located and killed after ten long years was a bit of an unexpected shock. 

And oddly, it feels like a rather anticlimactic one for me, given how long his evil shadow had haunted this country after 9/11 (and well before that if you were following any of the news for any part of the latter 1980s and pretty much all of the 1990s).  Anyone else feel that way, that this no longer feels like an ending but more of an "eh, what's next now?" sort of moment.

Maybe I've read too much history in my lifetime, but these things never end.  Never, ever end.  They just cycle back around again and again over the centuries far too often for me to savor any one particular moment.

My selfish, personal worry today, though? 

That my husband is flying out tomorrow to see his father, who is not well and most likely headed for that final bridge at the end of a long, difficult but well-lived lifetime. 

My husband naturally wants to spend time with his father while he still can.  I wish The Peanut and I were going, too, but she's already missed a lot of school this year because of the devastating and unexpected loss of our sister-in-law last October.  And now this.

Life is so, so hard sometimes, even when you know that this is the end of a very long and arduous race for a man who has more than earned his peace at the end of his days.  And my heart is aching for my husband and his brother, who have endured too much loss in the last few years already (their mother 3 years ago, my sister-in-law just last fall, and now their father most likely far too soon).

I know this is exceedingly selfish of me, but couldn't the Osama Bin Laden news have waited until after my husband's plane had landed safely in Phoenix? 

In a year when our family has already had to deal with enough grief and loss, the absolute last thing I need is to worry even more than we were already doing about airline attacks.  Although honestly, in the face of all the devastation from tornadoes recently, and so many other horrific news pieces int he last few months of loss and devastation, that sounds awfully selfish and small of me.

Forgive the need to protect my own happy little corner of the world.

(Beautifully poignant photo via *m22.  Love this shot!)


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Suzanne said...

i'm so sorry. sometimes protecting your own corner of the world is all that ya can do -- and it is nothing to apologize for.

my reaction was very similar to yours -- very anticlimactic.

nj progressive said...

Mr. NJ Progressive's dad died earlier this year. My mom is now in skilled nursing with advanced COPD, and my sister and I are spending down her assets so that Medicaid will kick in sometime this summer.

My husband and I have been spending most of our psychic energy over the past 4 years on parental health problems, and managing financial and healthcare affairs for our parents.

All the best to you and your husband.

Christy Hardin Smith said...

Suz -- it's like an old drug case, isn't it? You've been following leads forever and by the time you nail the person at the top, he's no longer really running operations but has become the "Junior Soprano" figurehead instead. And operations keep going despite what you've achieved.

In this case, al qaeda has been more weakened by being marginalized in the democracy movements in the Arab world than anything else I can recall. But we've been in the center of a stew for such a long time, that I have no idea where we'll end up going from here. What a mess.

I had a professor when I was in college who once said to me that American foreign policy should have one overarching rule: never, ever back yourself into a corner if you don't go into it with at least 10 viable exit strategies before you ever take your first step. His formative years were spent in Vietnam -- and, alas, his wisdom has not always been heeded, now has it?

Mr. ReddHedd left for the airport this morning. I'll be holding my breath until his flight lands safely in AZ later today. Being a grown-up sucks.

Christy Hardin Smith said...

NJ -- I hear you. My husband is about 9 years older than I am, so we've gone through this with his parents in the last 5 years or so -- he lost his mother 3 years ago after a protracted series of health issues, so this is not new for us unfortunately. My parents are about 10 years behind that time curve, and I told them both this week that they are not allowed to get so much as a sniffle for at least a year because we need a break. LOL

It's such a hard thing to see someone who was so strong and vital just a few years ago wither into old age so quickly. One of the things that the hubby and I have been discussing a lot of late is how we manage our own aging process so that The Peanut doesn't have to juggle so many balls in the air for us.