A few years ago when I found out my husband was sick, I knew that one day I would be alone. I had been alone many times in my life and I knew I could survive the loneliness. Or so I thought. Growing up I was an only child. My parents had me in their mid to late thirties. I spent a good part of my childhood alone. While my parents loved me with all their heart, they were not one to encourage me having friends over. I was the kid who could be your friend at school but after school there was no play dates or God forbid sleepovers. I spent a great deal of time in my room alone as a child. This was fine for me since I didn’t know any other way.
I got married at the age of twenty and when I was twenty-three had a beautiful baby girl. She is my only biological child. I was an only child so I thought nothing of having only one child. My husband came from a family of eight and all they did was fight. My daughter says that sometimes she wishes she had a sibling, but most of the time no way. If she had a sibling it would mean she would have to share. My daughter and I share a very close special bond. She is now twenty-one and married, but we are still very close. She says she definitely wants more than one child. She wants her kids to be able to share the bond of siblings.
I am a practicing catholic and I truly believe in angels. I feel when the people you love die they are given the power to watch over you so to speak. I know of many instances where a person could have been severely hurt or even died but didn’t because of a minor miracle. I think the miracle comes in the form of an angel. I will give you a couple of examples. When my daughter was one, my husband was in a terrible car accident while deer hunting. Looking at the damaged van, one would wonder how did he ever survive. I think his mother in the form of an angel saved his life on that rainy night. By doing this he was able to raise our daughter for another 18 years. Her life would have been vastly different if he had died on that fateful night. A couple of years ago on her way home from college, my daughter was in a terrible car accident. Her car crossed all lanes of traffic and flipped over five times. She survived the crash with only bad scrapes and bruises. She told me later that night that she felt someone’s arms come around her and hold her from the start of the accident. To this day, both of us believe those arms belonged to her father who had died eight months before.
You can call me crazy if you want but I think each of us has one or more of our own angels looking out for us everyday. Now that is not to say that bad things still don’t happen. I just think that we are sometimes given second chances from a higher being. I have been feeling lonelier than usual lately. There have been many things I have had to deal with lately alone. My mother is fighting early Alzheimer’s disease and it is challenging to keep an eye on her. My daughter and son-in-law will be coming home from college soon and need to make plans for next year. I am trying to help them decide what is best for them. I also found out in the last couple of weeks that I will be needing two surgeries in the next couple of months. My first surgery is a foot surgery involving a lump that has a 50% chance of being cancer. Now the possibility is scary for anyone, but considering I will be alone to recover after the surgery is especially daunting. I am not looking for sympathy at all. I am trying to point out that there are certain times that loneliness seems more pronounced. For my second surgery, a follow-up to a hysterectomy, I am waiting until the kids come home because the recovery period will be longer and more extensive.
I live alone not by choice but because that is how things happened. My kids are home when there are breaks from college. All other times it is just me and our two dogs. Most of the time I am so busy that I don’t mind being alone too much. But it is hard to be alone in times of crisis and pain. I know my dad and my husband will look out for me. I am not so scared about my upcoming surgery as I am about being alone afterward. Being an invalid gives one a good amount of time to think. I know firsthand as this will be my fourth foot surgery. I am wondering , however, if I am really going to be alone. Or will my guardian angels be there with me very step of the way to help me feel like I am not alone.