Statistics

I used to like to think about statistics.  Statistics made me feel safe.  If something was "statistically unlikely" it meant I really didn't have to worry about it all that much.

For instance, our family was in a serious car accident when Alan was about 8 years old.  My dad was driving, my mom, my sister, Alan, and I were driving back from my grandmother's house after Thanksgiving dinner.  A driver ran a stop sign and we hit each other going 65 miles an hour.  The car was totaled, my mom and sister were hospitalized, I had a back injury and Alan was unhurt.  So, statistically speaking, I would probably never be in another accident.  Check that off the list.

Getting on a airplane never bothered me much.  After all, it was much more likely that I would be seriously hurt or killed in a car crash than in a plane accident.  And, considering the fact I'd already been involved in a car crash I was statistically unlikely to be in a plane crash.  Check that off the list.

Statistics began to be less comforting when my dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer.  Statistically, he would only live a few months.  He fought for over three years.  I was happy statistics were wrong.

Alan came down with strep pneumonia several years ago, and was in ICU on a ventilator for 16 days.  He survived and made a full recovery.  So, statistically, he would never have a brush with death again.

Huntington's disease?  A 50/50 shot.  And considering the above mentioned brush with death, it seemed statistically unlikely.

But statistics can't be counted on, as I know now.  People and statistics are not one and the same.  And that's perhaps the biggest reason to hope for more days of good times with Alan.

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