In the past few days a long time friend of mine had a stroke while out of the country and was flown to Miami and has had emergency brain surgery. Tanya was like a second Mom to me when I was growing up. I have known her since I was 7. She bought me my 1st car, took me on a road trip to MI and back one summer, she took me on my 1st trip to Europe and she flew to Madison with me to settle for graduate school there. There are many other wonderful things she did for my friends, Mom and I. With marriage and kids and ALL we have grown apart, but talk or see each other a couple times a year. She comes up every Christmas because we have spent some (or all) of every Christmas together for the last 30 years. While she has many friends, she has no blood-family. Her friends are her family. I get that. Outside of my husband and 2 kids, the same is true for me.
Years ago I told Tanya to put me down as medical durable power of attorney. I am one of 3 listed. One of the others a dear friend of mine, Andrea, who has known Tanya for ages as well. She is brilliant, organized, concise and can solve her way out of a box in 30 seconds with her hands and feet tied behind her back. I worked in hospitals forever and Andrea and I joke in a serious way-I do hospitals, emergencies and touchy-feely well. Our skill sets are totally opposite. We think Tanya was on to that when she put us both down. The other person listed is Chessa, who lives in Co. While I had never spoken to Chessa until a few days ago-I know Tanya adores her and her family. I can understand that- she seems to be a combination of both Andrea and I.
What is funny is that I cannot remember the last time I left the state. (Oh yeah-I went to Seattle with Squid and Jennyalice to do a book reading and I got to visit my friend Kelli.) I do not recall traveling to and being in a strange city alone. This is big for me. Especially since being by myself often means “alone” or “lonely” to me. Tanya is currently in ICU and is evidently “alert” at times per the RN, but is medically sedated. So while I will see her-she will not be a companion to me. Of course I am not going there for that. But I am curious how it will be for me to be gone from 9 pm Sunday to noon on Fri and not be with anyone.
This will be a time in which I am able to help Tanya and a time that I will be able to culture pieces of my heart, mind and soul.
Time to board the plane 10:20 pm Sun July 5th. Red eye to Miami.