Reposting from the gratitude project site – instead of rewriting this,  I will just post what I did there with some additions. 

I am grateful for life.  For first responders.  For all the people I have met and known in our medical community in our small town.  My heart is broken.  Early today, in the darkness of the early morning, our small town’s medical lifeflight helicopter crashed on the way back to base.  Three crew perished.  I am grateful for the blue skies today, but even in the brightness it is dimmer than before.  This helicopter flew over our ranch numerous times a day on the way to the big city hospital, transporting patients in crisis.  Back when my husband was so ill, he had to be flown to out of the area hospitals on a number of occasions.  The flight crew became extended family as did everyone who took part in caring for my husband.  Once he had passed, the crew would swoop over our ranch, tip the helicopter and wave wildly at me when I was outside.  They usually flew so low that I could see who was the flight paramedic in the back seat. A few still waved, and it has been 5 years. 

It is so very quiet outside now.  Too quiet.  Bless their souls, and thanks to them for all the lives they saved.  I didn’t realize until now how very present that helicopter was in my everyday life – of sounds, of sights – I am always outside, and I was always hearing it or seeing it coming or going.


Tonight, as the news replays the tragedy, shows the wreckage strewn over a wide area, there is still the surreal feeling that we have after sudden tragedy.  Expecting the phone to ring with that person on the other end of it.  Waiting for the door to open and them to step inside, that it was all a bad dream.  In speaking to several who were close to those lost today, that came up twice.  Surreal.  A dream.  A nightmare.   Just a very sad day.  I found myself outside, raking like my life depended on it.  Seven big cart loads of dirt, rocks, leaves, moved from the dooryard to the creekbed area, hopefully to stop some erosion issues.  My neck thinks I have lost my mind, and I guess I did for a while.  My warm bed beckons, and tomorrow is another day – a better day, because we are due one.