My coughing had gotten so bad…

By Christopher Green

that I had to leave our wedding bed to sleep on the couch. Laurie works hard, long hours and deserves her sleep. I have noticed that since I have left the bedroom for the living room, she has been able to sleep much better.

You see when I cannot sleep I read and since I usually cannot sleep for more than a few hours at a time, I get a lot of reading in, especially at night. She always says that the light doesn’t bother her, but I see how much more rested she seems to be now that I’m not in there coughing and reading till the wee hours of  the night.

Out here in the living room, we have a whole wall of floor to ceiling windows. We have a peaked roof that reaches up pretty high. We live on top of a little incline, a ridge really, where Lake Erie use to lap against back when the Great Lakes were full to the brim. 

Looking through that north wall, I see beautiful trees, majestic really, these towering maples and oaks that reach up 70, 80 maybe even 90 feet high. They sway back and forth when the breeze kicks up like seaweed moving with the tide. Sometimes I imagine being at the bottom of the ocean and try to imagine what it must be like to live amongst those giant forests of kelp. Do fish marvel at their surroundings?

I have been out here for almost a full year now. I have seen all four seasons come and go. Each one is beautiful in its own way, but I have to say that late spring with the lushness still fresh from birth and not burnished from the summer heat is my favorite.

It seems like it was just a few weeks ago that the winter landscape showed me what lay beneath the foliage. It was stark, all the left over branches that had fallen and the way I could look far into the winter weary backyards of house 100s of feet away.

One evening I watched as a light snow was falling, casting everything in pure white. The sky was lighter, the reflected streetlights adding a soft brightness to the landscape and I felt so lucky that I was able to witness all of this right outside my windows.

It’s times like these when I wonder just how many more winters I will have. It may be perfectly normal for a man or a woman of 52 to reflect back on their lives and think about what is left, what is to come.

It may be that I am jealous of my sister and brother and how successful they turned out to be and how economically challenged I have become. I am proud of them, don’t get me wrong, but I was supposed to be the smart one. At least that is what the Iowa tests I took back in the 60’s claimed. This all came about, I believe, because our mingled family became the focal point this past month as first Betty’s death and then J’s graduation brought us all together.

It is times like these that I feel maybe that the teachers, the assistant principals and the guidance counselors were all correct in their assumption that I was never living up to my potential.

But maybe it is just that I think too much.

Perhaps that is my curse. I think too much about everything. Sometimes I think so much that I end up letting things happen to me instead of taking the appropriate action. Sometimes it is just easier that way.

Now I am faced with no wiggle room. The choice about the Lung Transplant has been made for me. But do not let me let you think I didn’t try like hell to get a stay in my sentence, a postponement of the inevitable, putting it all off as long as I could. But I have already mentioned that. You all know my doubts and fears.

I have delayed some of the tests and I know that I am going to get hell from the good Dr. Budev that I have not been scheduling the needed tests fast enough for her particular time frame.

But I can tell her with a clean conscious that this time, I truly put it all off until I made sure all my clients would be made whole before this ordeal I am about to undertake begins in earnest. I owe them that much for being so loyal to me over the years.

Now all my feelings have been exposed, all my fears and anxiety have been put out on the World Wide Web for anyone who cares enough to look can see.

A few nights ago as I watched the sky brighten up ever so slightly and heard the first chirps of the predawn birds, I began wondering where I will be in a year, two years or even ten years down the road. Will I make it to 65? Will I live longer than my parents?

And then it all became crystal clear to me that maybe I really do think too much.

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4 Responses to My coughing had gotten so bad…

  1. Miss Bee says:

    Hi Christopher,
    The putting off of tests is perfectly understandable. I had a problem with that as well. You really have a knack for writing words that will resonate with anyone facing the same predicament.
    Maybe you do think too much, but please continue to do so.Your description of the trees sound beautiful and peaceful. You will make it to 65 plus and I will make it to 48 plus…. = )

  2. Jeez, how do I answer that except with a humble thank you….

  3. Donna Marando Irion says:

    Chris, I am really enjoying your writing. I always love to read your stories. Keep it up, we are very proud of you and your bravery.

  4. Donna Marando Irion says:

    Didn’t know what to put in WEBSITE??? what does that mean?????

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