I am the image of my sister…
Day 464 — Here I am, more than several years ago, with my sister, Mary Eleanor, of blessed memory. We lost her a year and a half ago, and I still struggle every day. Last weekend, when I walked into the bridal shower of my sister Maureen’s daughter — one of the women stopped dead in her tracks looking at me and blurted out, “Oh my gawd! I thought you were Mary Eleanor!!!” I said, “Thank you.” Then ran to the bathroom to cry.
My sister Maureen was also brought to tears that day. Reminded by another well-meaning friend about how sad it was that Mary Eleanor, her daughter Missy, and my Mom were missing, and how lovely it would have been to share this day with them. No shit!
Not that I ended up looking lovely with red eyes and droopy mascara, but Maureen looked like Betty Davis on crack until she got ahold of a tissue! She was a trooper. Gracious until the end. I would have pulled that bit@h’s hair out. OK. Maybe not…now that I’ve been doing all this meditating, self-actualizing, life-affirming, stress response, reinvention work.
I’ve learned from my coach @BillCortright, grief is one of the lowest energies to emerge from. It is still central to my day to day existence. Like stress, what role is grief playing in my life? How is it anchoring me to this weight? While I’m aware the loss of my sister is the catalyst for this journey, and often a topic of this blog, this experience has me thinking about what I need to do to find peace and comfort.
I remember when Mary Eleanor’s daughter, my beautiful 22 yr. old niece and goddaughter, was fighting for her life in a coma. Frantic, I ran down the hospital hall into Mary Eleanor and Maureen’s arms. Hysterical crying, but focused and ready for the fight, as we looked into each other’s eyes, Mary Eleanor said, “How lucky are we? Some people can go their entire lives and never know this kind of love.”
Perhaps that is it. Gratitude, not grief. My father used to say, “The cryin’ room is on the third floor of a one story building. It took me years to figure out what the hell he was talking about. Which is probably why it’s taking me this long to begin to figure this gratitude/grief thing out.
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