Friday I went to lunch with some coworkers. I mentioned that we were going to the movies - likely our last evening out for a while, since we're likely to be trach-free (and thus nurse-free) at the end of April. He mentioned that with two kids, they didn't get out much. "I used to have a life" he said.
I thought about it quietly, as the topic shifted to other things.
I used to have a life where I worked in a nuclear power plant. Really. It may have been the best job I've ever had, other than the fact that it was the same old same old every day, and likely to end when the existing plants are decommissioned. I watch the situation in Japan with a mixture of horror and profound respect for those workers who have stayed behind - I know the folks I worked with would have done the same. Their families all lived close, so if an emergency arose, it was fix it, or their families took the worst of it.
I used to have a life where I was, primarily, an artist. School was a thing that I did between artwork. The pay wasn't great, but I was amazingly peaceful.
I used to have a life where I had plenty of spare money to spend on things I wanted. I don't know, looking back, that I was all that happy, but at least I had expendable cash to chase happiness with.
I used to have a life where I didn't worry about oxygen saturations, feeding schedules, high risk pregnancies, or a million other little details that are now an every day thing.
But...I'm not sure that means I don't have a life now, you know? It's just not the same as any of the other lives I've had before.