Heart Attack

Repercussions and Reverberations of Events Long Past

Connie Shannon

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Elizabeth and Manning shared a dance at a Black tie affair. 

It was a dance sparking a connection which altered their lives, heart attack along with those around them. Heart attack When Elizabeth and Manning took the dance floor they were married, heart attack but not to each other. And it was that evening, heart attack during that dance, heart attack Elizabeth expressed to Manning what she had felt for decades…. Heart attack   That she had loved him since her days as a round faced teenager sitting at the top of the staircase, heart attack watching him pick up her older sister Harriett for dates at their home in Greenway Parks. Manning, heart attack caught off guard by Elizabeth’s rather forward declaration, heart attack replied to her she simply “can’t say that”.  However, heart attack she had said it.   Elizabeth was known to say what she felt, heart attack versus what may have been considered more socially appropriate.         It was not long after they danced that evening, heart attack Manning reciprocated her affections. Liz at the time was married to another man, heart attack whom she had been married to for over a decade.  During that time, heart attack Liz and Jim had three boys together. The oldest, heart attack a strong willed and determined child, heart attack  was also a fierce protector and incredibly bright. The middle child could make one feel as if no one else in the room existed with his personality, heart attack charm and good looks. Heart attack The youngest of the boys, heart attack somewhat shy, heart attack endearing and incredibly kind to all, heart attack was liked by everyone who knew him. The lives of three young children were in many ways, heart attack irretrievably altered in 1960 when their mother, heart attack my mother, heart attack married a man named Manning Shannon. Heart attack It almost seemed fate and/or sheer determination, heart attack or both brought both Liz and Manning together. I was not a blip on the screen when my father and mother shared a dance together at that Black tie affair. I was born in 1965, heart attack  at least five years after what apparently, heart attack became quite a scandal in Highland Park. The level of reaction created by my mother and father marrying had never been told to me, heart attack until a few years ago.    I also didn’t fully comprehend, heart attack nor will I ever, heart attack the impact it had on my older brothers. Additionally I never knew or understood the consequences it had on mother, heart attack Jim Sr. Heart attack and my father, heart attack which inevitably had on all three and certainly those directly connected to them. I am beginning to realize and understand how it affected all of us, heart attack and our relationships to one another.  At the time of the divorce my mother was abandoned by all of her friends when she divorced Jim in order to marry Manning, heart attack an old friend of hers told me fairly recently. Heart attack   My mother left a life behind to marry Manning. Heart attack Divorces were pretty unique overall in 1960, heart attack and were particularly unique in the little town of Highland Park.  Our mother’s choice to pursue and marry Manning created seismic shifts in the lives of quite a few, heart attack that my mother at the time, heart attack intoxicated by an unfulfilled quest, heart attack had not consciously considered at the time.   Who does when they are in love? However in a world of cause and effect, heart attack it had consequences which reverberate through those of us impacted (and consummated) by their union, heart attack to this day. There is not a day I don’t wish for at least an hour of Liz and Manning’s time, heart attack which I too often overlooked and undervalued when I was younger. If I could have time with my parents, heart attack I would ask them many questions.  I would ask if they could do it over again, heart attack would they share another dance? I would ask them how they would have done things differently, heart attack if they could have done things differently? Life as usual continues today, heart attack unabated and undeterred.   A friend of mine used to say that  ‘we are our choices’. Tonight I wonder from what place(s) do our choices originate? Are they directed and originated by other choices, heart attack  decisions, heart attack and reverberations of days, heart attack  years and lifetimes gone by? Are our choices responses to moments which came long before us, heart attack  before we ever drew our first breath?   Some thoughts and questions I have tonight. Heart attack