i was all tucked in when i heard something go down the street.
it really sounded super large and odd so i noticed.
josh was in the kitchen, he'd stopped for a snack on his way
home from work, and he heard it too.
i heard him go out the front door.
okay. my eyes opened.
hearing him walk back in, i hollered to him, still really hoping
it was just some big weird truck.
ambulance next door.
next door to me is a guy my age and his elderly mom.
this isn't the 'elderly neighbor' i keep an eye on. this
is yet another elderly woman.
i got out of bed, slipped some jeans on under my nite shirt
and walked across my yard.
the ambulance lights were blinking and you could feel that whole
buzz you feel when an ambulance is parked nearby and its still
josh and i decided to stand in the driveway next to them,
which happened to be the elderly neighbor's driveway that i visit.
i knocked on her door, hollered it was terri, figuring she was
close by wonderin' what was goin' on.
her lights were on, but she never came out.
and josh and i stood in the driveway looking at the other driveway
and the ambulance and the lights.
josh looked at me. 'is this ghoulish??' he asked.
i grinned. 'you mean are we like ambulance chasers??'
i knew it was weird to just stand there, but i told him that i wanted
to offer help if they needed it and it seemed weirder to me to just
stay inside and act like nothing was going on.
'if he needs me, i want to be there for him,' i told josh. speaking
of the guy my age who lived there.
'remember when we had that ambulance outside our house? he came right
over to see what he could do. he's ALWAYS been the one to call in the
middle of the nite when something happens...he's always there.'
and then i looked at all the other houses that were dark with no one
coming out. 'what's up with that?' i asked. 'aren't we kinda all in
this together?' but then i remembered i had been in bed...maybe they
didn't know either...that's what i was going to believe. cause it's
a good group of people on my street.
so there josh and i stood.
in the dark.
'this is the way it works,' i thought.
'you go about your business, then it changes. just like that.
i was lost in thoughts of life and coping and the brevity of it all.
apparently josh was lost in his own similar thoughts,
cause he reached over and gently touched my hair.
'oh great.' i thought.
'in his head i'm the elderly mother in this story.'
i could see josh thinking i was getting old, how long was
i gonna be here, this would be me soon....i saw that all in his
eyes when i looked over at him.
and i gotta tell ya, it didn't do much for me!
i laugh as i type this...but oh man, i didn't laugh last nite
when i saw that in his eyes.
talk about unsettling.
i remember when i used to look at my parents that way.
all was fine. just a little scare with a slight fall, and our
neighbor was fine. relieved, we headed back home.
i climbed back in bed thinking of josh's look.
and no, i didn't sleep good last nite.
this morning i look ahead at my day.
and i am reminded yet again what a gift it is.