Day Eight — Left Turns


The unexpected left turns of life can be dangerous. You have to cross a lane of traffic so hope for a quiet road without too much to dodge. But life is a busy road as a good friend found out last week, suddenly navigating a turn she didn’t see coming, hanging on to the wheel and weaving through the potential collisions, steering for safety.

I know what it’s like to be in the hospital room where a sudden medical crisis landed her, sitting for hours listening to the beeping of monitors and watching the line of heart beats on a screen. I’ve spent the night drifting in and out of sleep in a reclining chair, ears alert for any change in the rhythm of machines tracking vital signs. Waking up and waiting. Waiting for the doctor to come in and deliver the latest news. Waiting for the results of scans and blood tests. Waiting for the day to pass because then it will be night and maybe everyone will sleep better and tomorrow will be better.

Then tomorrow is worse.   And still getting shorter and darker.

Last night, driving home from visiting my friend I had a couple of close calls. A truck made a left turn in front of me, drifting across my lane as if I wasn’t there. Then a car pulled out where I was turning left, making a wide arc that cut in to my lane. It was dark and I had trouble seeing the road once I’d made my turn.

Right.  My headlights weren’t on. So I was as invisible as I felt.

We are all so small and invisible. So I pay attention to the road, to what’s coming at me, and to everyone I love who’s riding out a scary turn.

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