Last week was the kind of week where I get message after message that our time here is short and shorter for some of us than others. On Thursday, a friend from college made a Facebook post that announced his decision to give up his pastoral call, move several states away, and focus on what will come next. That move was precipitated by health crises of the past year and the desire to be nearer to family.
That same day, a colleague at work died. She had felt bad on the previous Sunday, called 911, and collapsed on the floor. EMT workers took her to the hospital, but no one was able to revive her. She had lingered in a coma until Thursday, when she died. She was only 64, and she didn't look like someone who would have the heart attack that killed her. In other words, she was slender. Some people at work, mostly men, have those stomachs that portend a heart attack, but she did not.
She never missed a day of work. The e-mail that announced her death said that she was always the first at work and the last to go home. I bet she didn't take all her vacation time either.
Various people have reacted in various ways. There's been some crying. There's been brave faces. Some people have shut their office doors and sunk into work.
And then there's me. On Thursday morning, I did some spiritual journaling with my old markers, which once had been the most expensive art supply I ever had. But I found myself missing the Copic markers that I had used on the retreat.
So, on Thursday afternoon, I slipped away from my mourning work place and went to Dick Blick, the art supply store. I thought I'd just buy a few markers, but if I bought 12, they were much cheaper. And so, I bought myself a carpe diem present (or as my spouse said, a carpe doodling present):
They work well with my other markers, which is good news. Thursday night, I felt like sketching, and here's what I came up with (do you see a planet? an eye? a stone being rolled away?):
It's very different from my Thursday morning sketching:
I look forward to seeing where I will go with these markers. They now sit on the window ledge above my writing desk:
I tend to assume that I'll have a long life. But I might not. I want to fill the time that I have with the things that bring me joy.
feeling the feelings…
11 months ago