As I ponder the year of 2015, I am grateful for the lessons that 2015 taught me.
Looking into a mirror can be a painful experience when the older reflection of yourself stares back. I marvel at this aged reflection, the tuff of gray hair that exists in the middle of my fringe right on my part line. The crows feet, frown and laughter lines that have become a part of my everyday reflection. I moan over the excess weight that I carry and worry about the health implications that my wider middle will pose upon my middle years ahead, and I look with wonder and joy at how my four children have grown.
This year that has been 2015, has been one of many firsts both happy and sad.
What this year has taught me, is that life is fleeting, fast and indifferent to time. It is our own responsibility to grab life and make it as joyous as we seek.
Happiness is not a right, it is to be created, pursued and cherished as a divine gift. To be nurtured, respected and never taken for granted.
Time does not wait, it flies before you with no emotion or thought.
If you do not want it to slip away, then set your goals, make your plans and run with all your heart to achieve them.
Unconditional love is a treasure beyond all words, emotions and breath. It is given freely with no obligations and glows with life giving light.
As a candle flickers and grows with oxygen to shine forth it’s light, it can just as quickly be snuffed with the endless shadow of darkness that engulfs and suffocates.
I witnessed that evil, darkness of grief that engulfs your mind, heart and body……where no light shines. I was emotionally suffocating in silence, slipping deeper and deeper into a abyss.
Fortunately, I am blessed with dear friends both in person and in the virtual world of social media. Combined, flesh and blood friends dragged me out to share the beauty of daylight and virtual faces stepped out of the cyber world into the real world to throw me a life raft.
Love is forever
Two gorgeous cousins gave me the honor of sharing in the joy of their weddings. This love surrounded me with a much needed spark of light in a sea of grief and emotional darkness.
My husband’s parents Alec and Anne were married 60 years and showed me the power of commitment, loyalty and unconditional love. Thank you Mum and Dad, I miss you every day……
Then, sadly my Aunty Liz lost her soul mate and dearest friend only four months after these photos taken at our family get together in March 2015.
Grief takes it’s time
Until November, I have lived the life of a zombie, going through the motions of living, working, sleeping ….. but not conscious. It has been as if a thick, gooey fog existed between my thinking and being able to function. It wasn’t until early November, that I begun to feel like “me” again. Until then, I hid in my warm comfortable hole and lied there ,snug in the comfort of it’s dark embrace.
I have learnt there are no rules with grief, this poem listed on reddit by a GSnow says it better than I
“I wish I could say you get used to people dying. I never did. I don’t want to.
It tears a hole through me whenever somebody I love dies, no matter the circumstances. But I don’t want it to “not matter”. I don’t want it to be something that just passes. My scars are a testament to the love and the relationship that I had for and with that person. And if the scar is deep, so was the love. So be it. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are a testament that I can love deeply and live deeply and be cut, or even gouged, and that I can heal and continue to live and continue to love. And the scar tissue is stronger than the original flesh ever was. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are only ugly to people who can’t see.
As for grief, you’ll find it comes in waves. When the ship is first wrecked, you’re drowning, with wreckage all around you. Everything floating around you reminds you of the beauty and the magnificence of the ship that was, and is no more. And all you can do is float. You find some piece of the wreckage and you hang on for a while.
Maybe it’s some physical thing. Maybe it’s a happy memory or a photograph.
Maybe it’s a person who is also floating. For a while, all you can do is float. Stay alive.
In the beginning, the waves are 100 feet tall and crash over you without mercy. They come 10 seconds apart and don’t even give you time to catch your breath. All you can do is hang on and float.
After a while, maybe weeks, maybe months, you’ll find the waves are still 100 feet tall, but they come further apart. When they come, they still crash all over you and wipe you out. But in between, you can breathe, you can function.
You never know what’s going to trigger the grief.
It might be a song, a picture, a street intersection, the smell of a cup of coffee.
It can be just about anything…and the wave comes crashing. But in between waves, there is life.
Somewhere down the line, and it’s different for everybody, you find that the waves are only 80 feet tall. Or 50 feet tall. And while they still come, they come further apart.
You can see them coming. An anniversary, a birthday, or Christmas, or landing at O’Hare. You can see it coming, for the most part, and prepare yourself. And when it washes over you, you know that somehow you will, again, come out the other side. Soaking wet, sputtering, still hanging on to some tiny piece of the wreckage, but you’ll come out.
Take it from an old guy. The waves never stop coming, and somehow you don’t really want them to.
But you learn that you’ll survive them. And other waves will come. And you’ll survive them too.
If you’re lucky, you’ll have lots of scars from lots of loves. And lots of shipwrecks.”
Life lines, rafts and we are never alone!
Joanna and Ari, my two little angels haved worked with me in my bookkeeping office this year. They both have been my sanity, quality control and motivators to keep going.
My friends Sunny, Emmalita, Natrice, Antonia, Rodney, Bron and many more all played a vital part in letting me know that they cared and were there if I needed support.
Cards and messages arrived in my mail box from Chloe, Sharon, Chris, Sue and Ron to brighten my day.
2015 has taught me how blessed I am to have many forms of life lines available to me both online and off.
We live in a golden age of communication where friendships and kindness can arrive from all over the world.
The question we have to ask ourselves is this……
How will I make a impact to shine my light in 2016?
Life is a gift, choose to shine, love, extend friendship and give support to all ….. technology knows no limitation!