My heart is lurching today.
After a frenetic BlogHer13, I came home to news of a little girl who died because of her peanut allergy. Her own daddy is a doctor and was with her when she died. Three Epi-Pen injections couldn’t save her even though her parents followed protocol for exposure to peanuts. For the past five nights, I’ve dreamed of peanut and tree nut related anaphylaxis befalling Frat Boy The Younger due to his allergy. It’s terrifying and feels like people who don’t deal with it on the regular don’t understand how serious it is. I’m trying to find a way to help educate others without getting all Teresa Guidice screechy because my emotions overtake me.
My minivan, which is ten years old and gloriously paid for, broke down at a busy intersection on Thursday morning. A neighbor scooped up Frat Boy The Elder on her way to take her own kids to camp. A police lady nicely ignored my leaking eyeballs while stopping traffic long enough for me to move my rooted vehicle to a nearby parking lot to wait for AAA. At least five strangers stopped and offered help; it reminded me of how great it is to live in a small town, even though some things about it make me crazy. I waved them on because I knew AAA would be there soon.
As I waited, feeling teary and helpless, I got angry with myself for knowing next to nothing about cars and computers. I rely on both so much and don’t know how to fix them. It’s not very Lean In-ish of me at all. I got all pissy and woe is me because my car is broken and it’s going to cost a crap ton to fix a junker and what a pain in the ass. Then I thought about friends of mine. One has cancer and things were not going well. His wife has been a warrior for him and their kids. I know it has been awful for them. It can always be worse, I thought. A busted radiator is an expensive annoyance, but it is not cancer.
Later in the day, I got news of the marriage of two people I love ending, confirming what I had suspected for a while.
And then this morning, the news that cancer had won against my friend, an otherwise healthy and fit forty-two-year-old.
My junky old POS minivan can be fixed in less than 24 hours, but a person, a real live husband, daddy, son, brother, and friend can’t be. A marriage can’t be saved. A little girl died because she accidentally ate a tiny bite of peanut and the same thing could happen to my baby. It just sucks. Less for me because these are people I love. But it really sucks for all of them.
This afternoon I got tired of crying. Praying was making me feel ignored. I needed a distraction.
I decided to let the Wee Frat Boys to open the giant box of toys that had arrived the other day from The Big Toy Book party at #SweetSuite13 I attended while at BlogHer. When it arrived this week, I had pragmatically decided I would give the toys out sporadically over the next few months as prizes or bribes. Today I decided not to postpone the joy.
They played all afternoon and our recycle bin looks like today was Christmas from all of the packaging. They are spoiled rotten and I’m fresh out of behavior modification tools. They squealed and screamed and fought over the loot. It made me smile.
Don’t delay the happy.