The road is long and winding, and at times I am left without the power to say much. Lately I feel as if my breath has been literally snatched from me. I have been through two bouts of the flu, and the last left me with a lingering cough and tightness in my chest. Living where I do at 9000 feet makes this hard. Really hard. Skiing where I do at 12000 feet makes this crazy. But I do it anyway.
But the feeling of choking has been the worst at night, when I awake feeling like I have an anvil on my chest. It's not the cough that bothers me so much, but the feeling. I have a vivid memory from my early childhood of falling flat on my back onto the ground from the top of our jungle gym. I remember being afraid that I was dying, that I would never breathe again. In my little mind I thought of all the things I would never do and the places I would never see. Just the thought of missing out was enough to make me get on all fours and gasp for air, no matter how much it hurt.
That's how I feel now. Not quite sick, just determined to feel better, now matter how much it hurts.
I love traveling down a long and winding road. I have never cared for a straight one.