Me–I’m just glad to be here

When I went to summer camp as a kid, there was guy who spent his summers off from teaching and coaching kids in East Texas serving as a program director teaching and coaching kids in Arkansas. One of his duties was to get on the loud speaker every morning and give the wake up call and announcements. He ended every morning with, “The sun is shining (even if it was raining), the birds are singing and me…well, I’m must glad to be here.

Today, I have church member who often uses the same phrase when you ask him how he’s doing. Although, he usually tosses in an expletive for emphasis. (The  camp guy probably would have, too, if it wouldn’t have gotten him fired).

I got word last night that a friend I met while living in Duesseldorf passed away suddenly from heart failure in her native Japan. She was my age and has a son who went to school with my daughter. She taught me (and a number of other women how to roll Sushi) She was healthy and happy and energetic and the last person you would every expect to die because her heart stopped.

We lived in Germany for two years and in London for one from 2006-2009. Since we have been back, I have lost four friends from that time in my life.Two heart failures, a car accident and a suicide. All women. All mothers of children my daughter (and I) adored. All far too young.

Before I got the news last night, I was trying to force my allergy-ridden, steroid laced brain to organize all the places my daughter needs to be over the next six weeks as school and “dance season” work towards wrapping up and figure out where I needed to be during that time and who all I needed to call on to help one or both of us get to where we need to be on any given day. Thank God for a spouse and two parents. If I didn’t have the latter, I might have to get a second one of the former…and I hear that’s frowned upon.

I’m on about eight different drugs along with three different holistic remedies (local honey, nettie pot and Quercetin). I’m feeling fairly ineffective in managing most facets of my life right now, I’m going to be 45 in less than a month (I hate the “5” birthdays far more than the big “0’s”) and I still can never find my keys. But boy, am I glad to be here.

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