Death came early to this young girl. My grandparents on my Dad’s side were both gone by the time I was 10. At 13 I lost my best friend, Yiayia, my Mother’s Mom. Lots of pets and friends, too. They came and went and I cried and processed and moved on as best I could. But, these losses were natural. Part of this existence. Par for the course, no?
To experience a loss is one thing. To experience something that effectively wipes your hard drive, is an experience that is both savage and beautiful at the same time.
As a Mother, I have experienced the loss of a child.
As a Child, I have experienced the loss of a parent.
As a friend, I have experienced the loss of many friends.
I have watched the life force slowly ebb from its physical restraints.
We all have. Humanity is awash with the dead and dying.
When I was 19 years young, my best friend shot himself. I died, too. I became white noise. I existed. Barely.
My 30th birthday was especially hard. We had a silly pact, that if neither of us had found happiness with other people he and I could at least have kids together and raise them with love. I made it. He did not.
At the funeral, his mother was most upset with me. I couldn’t save him. I didn’t even try.
I was so broken. My only source of gratitude was the vague thought that he had saved me from the worst of it.
A lifetime later I am on the other side and have learned that a heart still beats after its been broken. It’s a bitter blessing.
I have learned that the human experience is precious and I would sorely miss it.
Without the pain I would not remember to live. It keeps me grounded.
How I live today is with extreme gratitude. Especially for the little things. Like sipping cool water from a drinking fountain. Stubbing my toe in the middle of the night. Even getting a headache! It is so sublimely human and rare in this manner that I grab hold of it and exude LOVE…
This is how I live.