Wednesday, February 27, 2008

"Eternally Burned Into My Soul"

Some of you may have seen or heard this phrase from me over the past week and a half and wonder what I mean by it. Allow me this opportunity to explain.

Many people equate the soul with feelings or emotions. Think of all the songs that mention the soul in this manner. For some reason, thinking of the soul makes the lyrics of the Billy Joel song "It's All About Soul" immediately come to mind:
It's all about soul
It's all about faith and a deeper devotion
It's all about soul
'Cause under the love is a stronger emotion
She's got to be strong
'Cause so many things gettin' out of control
Should drive her away
So why does she stay?
It's all about soul
Now, consider what happened that fateful Saturday, February 16. There are a million different emotions that are now forever associated with that sequence of events: anger, fear, hopelessness, distress, sadness, and likely many many more I have yet to discover. Consider how you felt when the worst moment of your life occurred. Now, multiply that by a significant number. How significant? I don't know ... maybe a googolplex? That is most likely how you would feel if your child ... your first-born ... your own personal miracle ... were suddenly in your arms and when you looked down, you saw death.

However, there's an interesting thing about emotions -- your soul, even. It can be suppressed. You can push aside those horrible feelings and focus on the positives happening amongst the tragedy (i.e., paramedics brought him back to life, vital signs are stable, reacts to stimuli, etc.).

Fast forward to this past Saturday. I was sitting alone in Aidan's room when the memories of that day started running through my head. Unfortunately, you cannot stop replaying the sequence of events when they start playing in your mind. As I relived diving in the water and flipping his lifeless body over to see lifeless eyes and ice blue lips, I couldn't hold back the tears.

So, go ahead and burn a memory into my soul ... I'll take a million and one of those over replaying that sequence of events in my mind's eye ever again. The sad thing is that it will always replay in those quiet moments when I look at my son and ask that dreaded question: "What If ...?".

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