I have borrowed a lot in my life and I am in a great deal of debt.
My husband was vigilant throughout the time I was receiving chemo-therapy. There was never a time when he was too busy to attend a doctor’s appointment with me. There was never a time he was too tired to travel to Toronto to see me after surgery. There was never a time he was too preoccupied to sit with me for six hours while I received my chemo. He gave of himself and he gave of his time; To him I owe a debt of gratitude.
My children have allowed me to see life once again through their eyes. Ben, Katya, and David have always included me in their lives. They invited me to participate in their sports activities, their singing or acting performances, and have included me with their friends. I have never felt like an “excluded” parent or that they are embarrassed of me; to them I owe a debt of gratitude.
My friends have supported me when I needed encouragement. My friends have prepared meals, baked in my oven to make the house smell good, visited when I was house-bound, provided house-cleaning services when I could not clean, and written long letters of friendship that walked me down memory lane. They have sent messages on the phone, read my blog posts and responded, sketched me doodles, and mailed me socks. They have picked up my children, participated in long bike rides and walks, defended me against those who may have been less kind, while others have simply listened. You know who you are. To them, to you, I owe a debt of gratitude.
God has granted me time. Through the hands of the physicians and nurses who are so gifted in their medical fields, I have been given more time. By all accounts, I shouldn’t be here today; I was very ill. Yet, here I am. I am living on borrowed time. I try to remember this every morning. I try to remember that “today” – “right now” – is a gift. It is the icing on the cake. I feel a sense that I need to make something of this day – to do something for others – to give back – to somehow repay my debt.
These gifts are not monetary. The best gifts in life – the things I appreciate the most – are not concrete. I do enjoy good food, mind you, as well as a warm bed and a new refrigerator – but by and large, it is the ephemeral moments that are the best. I have a purpose in this life in which I am now so heavily invested.