You always remember the horrific events that passes by your life. You know what you were doing and where you were at when it happens and forever, it will remain with you because you can never forget. April 16, 2013 is such a day for me.
The day started with me being late for work. Tonia had been in a great mood all day after being sad the last week or so, at about 4:35pm all that changed. She called while I was at work, the test results came back from her lung/breathing test and the doctor diagnosed that she has moderate to severe emphysema.
As defined by MayoClinic.com:
“Emphysema occurs when the air sacs in your lungs are gradually destroyed, making you progressively more short of breath. Emphysema is one of several diseases known collectively as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Smoking is the leading cause of emphysema.
As it worsens, emphysema turns the spherical air sacs – clustered like bunches of grapes – into large, irregular pockets with gaping holes in their inner walls. This reduces the surface area of the lungs and, in turn, the amount of oxygen that reaches your bloodstream.
Emphysema also slowly destroys the elastic fibers that hold open the small airways leading to the air sacs. This allows these airways to collapse when you breathe out, so the air in your lungs can’t escape. Treatment may slow the progression of emphysema, but it can’t reverse the damage.”
Tonia’s family history has shown that both grandmother and mother both died of this disease and they died in their fifties. Mary, my mother-in-law passed when she was 56. Tonia turns 45 this August. So what does this mean? it means the countdown clock has begun and as of right now, I feel like I have lost all semblances of control in my life. Our life may not be perfect, but as she has said so many times, we are perfect for each other… and now, I feel like I’m going to lose even that.
I know that everything that lives will eventually die. Perhaps the “not knowing” when or what will kill you, gives you the hope that you will live forever.. maybe not forever – but definitely a long time… but what do you do when that time is cut short? What do I say? What can I do? My heart feels like it has been ripped from my body and I’m watching it being torn into shreds and I can’t do a damn thing about it.
I can’t lose her.