Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Last Day of My Old Life

On November 10, 2004, I had just returned from Philadelphia after a visit with one of our children and our new grandson. I had a miserable cold. Tom stayed home from Philly - he was recovering from cataract surgery and it just wasn't practical for him to travel right then. We planned on taking another trip east in the next couple of months anyway. (Note to self: if you think you are in control you are delusional).

Today, I am trying my best to remember what that day held. I am sure Tom and I had coffee together and he had his cinnamon roll. I know I went to work that day - I have no idea what I did. We had just moved into our new office space and so I probably organized my desk and files. I was not involved in a leadership transition having just finished the Way to Grow transition the end of October. (another note to self: at times we think our work and activities are so crucial - HA!)

I know I came home in the early afternoon and took Tom to the Ophthalmologist for his final check-up on the cataract surgeries - there had been two in the past three months. When I drove up in front, Tom came out of the house - he looked so handsome. He was wearing black jeans, a black cotton sweater over a beautiful yellow button-down shirt, black loafers and his leather bomber jacket - and of course, a big smile on his face.

The doctor pronounced Tom's eyes healed. In fact, his eyesight was so improved after the new lens implants that he no longer needed glasses. He died with those brand new eyes.

The rest of the day was just like all the rest of our days. We probably had a glass of wine and ate a nice dinner. Tom was coming down with a cold (caught it from me) and so we went to bed early. Take nothing for granted.....like I said - this was the last day of my old life.

More to come...................


  1. Wow -- at five years you do sound so composed and clear. Even able to recount what happened.

    Something for me to look forward to!



  2. Just another Day, it seemed to be, but as you say:
    Take nothing for granted.
    Your dearest and closest are more important than your office and work,
    as long as you can afford food and a place to live.
    We never know what happens next minute. We are more fragile than we think about. Hence, live your life when you are among us.
    Those who has left us, do not know how much we miss them.
    But I'm sure they wish we could live with all the bright moments and memories shared.


  3. Your post reminded me of Joan Didion's haunting words to the start of her memoir on grief, "The Year of Magical Thinking."

    "Life changes fast.
    Life changes in the instant.
    You sit down to dinner and life as you know it ends...

    Life changes in the instant.
    The ordinary instant."

  4. I can certainly attest to much of what you say here being of significance. Found "The Year of Magical Thinking" a book I had to wait a year or so to read, but when I was ready, the timing was right for me. Even prompted me to write more of my own experience on my blog.