All week long I'd stayed calm, told myself that if there was a problem we'd deal with it when it arose. Trust God, I kept telling myself.
And I did great, kept my hypochondria at bay, stayed calm ... until five minutes before my check up. I went to use the bathroom and for a moment thought, Let's just not come out. Or, better yet, the exit is right around the corner. Run for it!
A moment of rapid heartbeat, followed by a deep breath and a determined walk back to the exam room. Up onto the exam table. Now I get what people mean when they talk about certain situations and say they felt like they were standing outside themselves, observing. That was me as the doctor and I began talking, as she conducted her examination. An observer.
Happily, this second doctor couldn't find anything worrisome. I had dodged the bullet. When I came back out to the waiting room, my husband, who had gone with me, and had been assuring me all week that everything would be fine, cried with relief. We practically skipped out of the hospital. And went to a cool Irish restaurant in Seattle to celebrate. (Surrounded by books, no less - how's that for appropriate for a writer?)
There will, of course, come a day when we get news that isn't so great, when one or the other of us has to face a new disease and, eventually, death. This is not that time. Still, I must say, I came away with the reminder that, no matter how long you live, life is short.
I am grateful for this new day, grateful for new opportunities, and determined to be open to whatever God has in store for me. It's so easy to drift. I want to keep my little boat pointed in the direction of worthwhile projects, kindness, selflessness and a closer walk with God. Drifting eats up too many precious days. Yes to living each day to the fullest.
And now, I'm going to go enjoy some chocolate. Life's too short not to enjoy its simple pleasures, don't you think?