Wednesday, November 21, 2007


My mom and I went to the beach twice today. We ate breakfast at a restaurant there, and I just sat and stared at the water, and my mom commented that it was the first time in a while she'd seen me really relax. I could feel my body changing, my heart rate slowing, my breathing slowing, everything. We went back tonight. I wanted to get some pictures of the water when the sun was going down and everything was turning pink and peaceful. I swear to you, if my mom hadn't been there, I would have sat in the sand and had myself a good cry. I could feel all the sorrow and disappointments in life welling up from my chest into my throat, and begging for escape. I took a deep breath, exhaled, and kept walking.

November is a difficult time in my family, and has been for ten years. I lost both of my mom's parents in November 1997, only ten days apart. I feel like I should have asked them so much, gotten to know them as people, but my life was only really just starting as an adult when they died and I didn't have that frame of mind. It was "Me, Me, Me!" when I was 21. I am tremendously sorry to have missed the opportunity to share their history.

So, I suppose Thanksgiving will always have a little sadness attached, falling as it does on or around the anniversaries of their deaths. But this year, I've done so much work on me, and I feel like I'm really making some progress putting the answers together in a way that makes sense, in a way I can live with. I'm not sure, truly that I like all the answers that I've come away with, but I'm starting to understand that those things can change--I'm not the person I was ten years ago, and in ten years I won't be the person I am today.

So I was reading some Thanksgiving blog entries and a new friend posted one on hers about her gratitude towards people for helping her up during some recent hard times. And then she wrote:

Mostly, I'm thankful for my life. It has its ups. It has its downs. But, this life is mine.

You betcha. This year, I'm thankful for my life. I'm glad I'm taking some time to be selfish and to get to know the person I am and feel comfortable with the person I've become. I'm thankful for all the people who have contributed to making me the person I am, family and friends and colleagues and sworn enemies and the ones who got away and the ones who never left my side. I really don't believe I'd be here without each person's influence and I feel incredibly lucky to have the life I lead, to be surrounded by the truly quality people I'm surrounded by, to have taken advantage of opportunities that have come towards me, to have lived and worked and played how I wanted, to have fallen and picked myself up and dusted myself off and gotten back on the horse.

I truly believe 2008 has big things in store for me, but tonight I'm grateful for 2007, for the life I've led this year. It has been up and down, but I wouldn't have traded it, and I've come to value it a bit more each passing minute. My wish for you is a safe, happy holiday filled with love and joy and everything you need to feel a little peace.

2 pearl(s) of wisdom:

Jasper John R. said...

Perhaps you could "atone" for being young before you could capture your grandparent's wisdom (not that I think you have anything to atone for), by being a visitor at a nursing home and listening to you grandparent's peers. It's not the exact same thing, but it's an approximation. And, it will help you get out of your funk, help others, and learn to shift your focus from you to others. Just an idea,

nettiemac said...

Much love to you. Cry anyway. You never have to explain why.