In Medieval Lit, and also in Classical and later works, one is reminded constantly on the world's fickleness, and the unreliability of worldly happiness, renown, fame, and comfort. Along with "memento mori," this may be one of the most constant themes of all literature.
In the modern world, surrounded by our crafted bubble of medical science and manufactured comforts, we forget sometimes just how vulnerable we are. But being human, we are just as prone to a fall as any human ever has been, perhaps more so because of our technological hubris, added on to the usual kind, that only creates an opportunity for error and destruction on a global scale.
I may have thought I cheated fate in overcoming the disadvantages of my early life, and by dint of sheer will and effort, climbing the face of a rock to reach a modest pinnacle. I got my house, after years of dreaming, and it is all I would have wanted. I have a loving husband and son and a wonderful community who are all I would have asked for.
But it is clear that I am subject to the same turn of the wheel as everyone else. Yesterday, on the one year anniversary of my father's death, I received notice that I may still owe thousands of dollars for my parents' medical bills, the part uncovered by medicare and the secondary insurance they held at their death. I had assumed because of a lull of perhaps 6 months in bills that I had paid all of them, so I did not have their mail transferred to our new address, but it appears I will have to contact the post office and have those things sent here, and somehow pay the bills, and all this in the face of an uncertain future.