October 7, 2011: Glass Statues

I hate the nights the most.

I can’t remember the last time I made it through the whole night. It’s quarter to three in the morning and I have a 18km trail run planned in a few hours. Doubt that I’ll be sleeping before then. At least when I’m running all I need to worry about is making it up the next hill.

I’m tired but I can’t sleep. Does that make any sense?

Tomorrow is Yom Kippur. I guess it would be more accurate to say that tonight is Yom Kippur.

I wish I could write an inspiring post in preparation, but you know what?

I’m out of words.

What more could I say to G-d that I have not said already, over and over again?

So let me keep my conversations with G-d private this time and instead talk to all of you who are reading this blog.

You can’t take anything for granted.

Not a week, not a day, not even a minute.

Because our comfortable, stable lives are no more than glass statues that can be shattered at any second.

It wasn’t that long ago that I went out to celebrate a friend’s birthday in Jerusalem.

As I sat eating waffles, a malignant tumor grew in my wife’s stomach.

I still remember everything we were told after we went to the Emergency Room that night and at the hospital over the next few days:

“It’s probably nothing but we want to rule things out.”

“We just want to run a few tests to make sure it’s nothing serious.”

“We want to check her in to the hospital just to be on the safe side.”

“It could be a few things, we need to keep looking.”

“There’s something in the stomach that could be a tumor.”

“It’s looks like stomach cancer.”

“The biopsy is positive. It’s a serious situation. Hopefully it has not spread.

“There is a not insignificant amount of cancer cells beyond the stomach.”

“The cancer is not operable.”

“We need to start chemotherapy as soon as possible.”

Wait a second. Stop.

How could this have happened?

Every time I thought the news could not get any worse, it did.

I want to turn back the clock. To go back to the Waffle Bar where my biggest worry was whether waffles and ice cream would affect my running.

I still hope that maybe, just maybe — I will open my eyes and Stella will be sleeping next to me and it will all have been a terrible, terrible dream.

And if that were to happen…….

I would never take a single second for granted anymore. I would cherish every moment.

There are so many things I would do differently.

If only.

But the nightmare doesn’t end.

For all of you who will wake up next to someone you love in the morning — never forget what is truly important. Think of how you would feel if G-d forbid that person was diagnosed with a horrible disease.

You may be physically strong, mentally sharp, wealthy — at the top of your game.


Remember — our lives are glass statues. They can be immensely beautiful, but will always be fragile.

Handle with care.

So many things we worry about are really inconsequential.

It doesn’t really matter what the Yankees or Redskins do.

It matters what we do.

Wishing all our friends a year filled with love and health and only happy news.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: