Six months ago today, a pounding on my front door woke me. Two sheriff's deputies and a parish priest were on the front stoop to tell me Aimee was dead, killed when a southbound coal train struck our Honda Civic just north of Lawrence.
Six months. Half a year.
Nearly 2/3 of Elliot's life. He was 3 1/2 months old and is now 9 1/2.
I remember being the Aaron of six months ago. I remember feeling the awful, empty pain in my stomach and chest.
A week or so after she died, I remember telling myself I would feel differently in a month, in three months, in six months. I remember focusing on the magic of time to heal wounds torn open on that April day. I remember well how I knew I could not make "it" happen any faster than it needed to on its own.
Time, the only truly precious resource, had to sweep forward. I couldn't stop time had I wanted to.
And time has brought many changes, some more wonderful than I could have hoped. It has brought grief, healing, and insight beyond what Aaron from six months ago would have imagined. It has brought a new zest for living, a new focus on life, a new perspective on the importance love and understanding and patience play in my life and will continue to play in my life. It has encouraged me to live harder than I thought possible--and I don't mean the "hard" life, but the life lived to "eleven" (with a nod to Spinal Tap).
I sit here, Aaron of October 2012, and dream six months down the road. What will that Aaron be able to say of the one now? What new measurements can he take of his life?
I plan to live and experience and grow every day until I pause again to reflect.
It's a gift for which I am so thankful.