Motherhood, Mortality, and the Myth of Control


Sorry to be dramatic, but a few weeks ago, I had a heart attack.

Yes, seriously. I never dreamed middle-aged moms’ coronary arteries suddenly shredding themselves was a thing, but apparently, it’s a thing. One moment, I was brushing my hair; the next moment, I collapsed, I couldn’t breathe or see, and my right arm went totally limp. My four little children were still in their beds, waiting for Mommy to come get them up. The fear they would find me dead is the most terrible thing I’ve ever felt.

Technology, wealth, and peace have insulated me from the tragedy that has been perfectly ordinary throughout human history. I felt like I owned my life as long as I did a pretty good job with it; I raise my kids pretty good, I live the gospel pretty good, and I don’t get in knife fights or hang glide or do drugs.

But now, my illusion of entitlement is shattered. I’ve no right to be here. I’m not entitled to be alive. I own nothing because the ancient wisdom was always true: The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away (but didn’t go through with it this time). Blessed be the name of the Lord.

I’m besotted with gratitude that He let me stay. There’s nothing like a brush with death to make you count your blessings. But I’m also reeling with dismay that it happened (and that it has an uncomfortably high chance of an encore). I guess I’m grieving my old illusion.

To read the entire article: Public Square Magazine