A Wake-Up Call

It's a sad thing, the death of a young, beautiful woman in some freak accident that was so avoidable. Natasha Richardson's death this week is a tragedy, but it reminded me how close my family came to the same thing.

Natasha died of an epidural hematoma, bleeding on the brain from blunt trauma. Her symptoms sounded so familiar, I felt a chill: seemed fine after hitting her head, walking around.

Our Susie did the same thing. At age 11, she hit heads in the swimming pool with her little brother. A lot of screaming and yelling, but how bad could it be, right? Two hours later, we couldn't wake her up. The next two weeks were the most frightening of our lives as she underwent brain surgery and we sat by her side for a week while she lay in a deep coma.

God miraculously restored her, although she will always have physical and educational challenges. But we're not complaining. Natasha's story is another reminder of just how much we've been given.

Times Are A-Changin'

I was just thinking today how much has changed since we entered this new millennium. Rapid change has become a way of life and sometimes we don't realize it until we stop for breath and look back.

My father died in 1998 and my mother in January 2001. Some days it doesn't seem like they've been gone such a long time until I stop and think about what is so commonplace now that they knew nothing about.

My father never saw Y2K that everyone got so nervous about. Neither of them knew about 9/11, the Iraq war, or our current recession. The Internet was still a thing of mystery to most average Americans, usable but not essential to life as it is now. Cell phones were a novelty, email the new method of communication for those far away.

Only 8 years since my mother died, yet she had never heard of blogs, Facebook, or MySpace and websites were designed by pros with technological genius. Cell phones were large, clunky items that looked like house phones and had roaming blackouts larger than the clear areas. Gas had never been $4 a gallon and no one had heard of hybrid cars.

Putting a frame around the changes happening so rapidly brings it into clearer focus. How quickly things evolve, move on, grow up, and then they're gone.

As frightening as our times may be, this too will pass...