Monday, September 18, 2006
life in one lane
As I was driving north on I-405 this past afternoon, and I couldn't help but noticing the commute was even more terrible than it usually was. I had only gotten onto the freeway for less than 5 minutes when I hit a motionless amount of gridlock. I spent the next over half-hour stuck on the road, trying to bite my tongue from screaming a variable load of road-rage induced obscenities.
When I finally made my way further down the road, I was able to see the cause - a multi-lane accident. I exited the freeway early to avoid the bottleneck, but as I drove up the offramp, I could glimpse the scene... one carwreck smashed against the side of the far left railing, and another car completely flipped over (a sports coup) blackened with the evidence that a fire had been previously burning, and both its passenger and driver-side doors flung open, as if someone (or someone's body) had to be pryed from the wreckage.
The whole scene was ringed by flares, orange cones, and a couple of squads of firefighters and cops milled around the scene, trying to clean up and direct traffic.
After I got to work, I was able to get a picture of the scene via a traffic watch camera on the WSDOT site:
That's probably when I wondered what happened to the people in those cars.
These days, "Life is fragile" and "Life is short" are the kinds of cliches that normally punctuate the end of Lifetime channel or Hallmark movies, but lately, they've been realities that have been hanging around the back of my brain. The themes that have echoed in my own experiences that seem to once again to cruelly reappear to be re-lived.
An ex-roommate of mine, Bible study leader, fellow CBCer, but most of all, a friend, has been fighting a terminal illness for awhile now, since it struck out of nowhere last year. Everyone who knows him loves him a lot, and has been praying for his recovery, but in the past months and few weeks, his condition has worsened to the point that now, the effectiveness of the treatments hasn't been helping.
I've resolved myself to continue praying for my friend, however it still pains me to consider the full range of possibilities that could happen, including the outcome that his doctors say is inevitable no matter treatment. Though I'm not discounting that a miracle may still happen, a part of me is already too well-accustomed to accepting that death is a very real thing, and that "it" happens all the time - to the old, to the young, to the righteous, to the guilty, to the wealthy, to the poor - yet its morbid equality is neither a comfort or satisfying answer.
A person my age still expects to grow old with their friends; to see them all get married, have children; to someday hang out together in the backyard grilling steaks and drinking beer while swapping stories of the "old days"... is it so strange to dislike the thought that it may not happen? Is it so strange to feel heartache at the thought that some, (or even many...) of the friends we have now will leave this world before us, to never be seen again until we pass the pearly gates and stand in heaven?
It's like being stuck in a single lane; there's no way to avoid certain things... inevitably we must be confronted with the shortness of our lives, and all the cliches we attach to it. It must be embraced.
No matter what happens, I don't want my eyes to be closed it. God give me the strength to be faithful and not be numb to it.
"God give me the strength to be faithful and not be numb to it."Post a Comment
Your last sentence brought me to tears... ;(