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Jewish Journal

Are you prepared?

by Ilana Angel

August 28, 2009 | 5:19 pm

It’s amazing how life can change in an instant.  It only takes a split second for things to be turned completely upside down.  No matter how hard we try to have all our ducks in a row and plan for the future, can we ever really be prepared for the shock of surprise?

The friend I’ve been nursing back to health took an unexpected turn and had to be rushed to the hospital.  It’s been a crazy 72 hours of tests and surgery and overall scariness.  Thank God she is much, much better and after some frightening moments, it would appear that she is now out of the woods and on the path to health.  I am so pleased this chapter ended well and that a happy ending is in sight.

I was not prepared for the turn of events this week.  From the perspective of the emotions I would feel or the physical effects of stress and no sleep, I was just not prepared.  I was also not prepared for a trip to Cedars Sinai!  I was about to spend 48 hours in a buffet line of yummy doctors, nurses, technicians and pharmacists and I was wearing an old pair of jeans, a t-shirt and was covered in my friends bodily fluids.  Not really the look I was hoping for.  That said, my bra and panties were a matching set!  My mother always told me that a lady matched her undergarments and I always have.  I was tempted to march around in my undies just to show they were pretty and to distract attention from my fluid decorated couture.

You can buy insurance, have a will, make arrangements and let everyone know what your choices are for yourself.  You can do all this and still not ever be prepared for a shocking change.  I am left with a great appreciation for my friend and her strength.  For her family who are solid and loving.  For my son who is the reason I do everything, for my family who give my life color and for my friends who are the most wonderful people I know.  I want all those that I love to know it.  I LOVE YOU.

If you are sad, lonely, bitter, afraid, alone or insecure, we have all been there and it will be ok.  If life is great and you are surrounded by love and support then hold on tightly and enjoy each moment.  Life is unpredictable and that is both fabulous and a little scary because our time is not guaranteed.  If you have been at battle with someone in your life, extend your hand.  For those who see the hand, accept it.  Life is a miracle and we must all do whatever we can to live our best life possible and at the same time, allow those around us to do the same regardless of whether we know them or they are a stranger.  For those who need it, want it, or have been waiting for it, my hand is extended.

To my friend who has struggled this week, I’m so thrilled that you are going to be ok.  I love you with all my heart.  You are brave and strong and beautiful.  At the end of the day, when faced with an unexpected challenge, all we can do is smile, brace ourselves for a shock and keep the faith.

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