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life we expect over life we're given

one of the undying truths i have discovered through this process is that few of us live the life we imagine.  sure, some do.  but most have speed bumps thrown their way throughout life.  whether it's a divorce or death or financial insecurity, many start over, many rebuild, many take stock throughout their thirties, forties, fifties and think "well this isn't where i thought i would be"



granted... all things considered, mine is more tragic than most.  even outside of these most recent events my life has seen its fill of trying circumstances.  by the age of eight i had seen abuse and death in my family.  not exactly what you would hope for, but certainly it has given me the coping mechanisms i have now.  


as i navigate these next steps, the great unknown, there are many that have opinions and voices into my life.  everyone wants what's best for me and everyone has their own idea of what that is.

people... i don't even know what that is.  but i know what i want to try.  i know what i've wished for and dreamt for in my own personal life.  and at the end of the day it is what it is

this is not the life i wanted. 
this is not the life i dreamt of
this is the life i was given

and it is still precious, it still has value and meaning and joy.  the life we are given is so very often different than what we expect.  i for so long, thought i had put in my time with suffering.  i remember the very real feeling of being just blindsided when i lost elly because what kind of fate would take someone's mother and their daughter.

there is a very real sensation of being marked.  but i know that suffering produces greatness.  if one plateaus and knows only happiness, only serenity, only peace- there is no push, there is no strive, there is no need to do more, to be more, to achieve more.

you know who i think of a lot in this process?  lebron james.  thirteen years, he worked for thirteen years to bring a championship to cleveland.  he toiled and sweat and was hated, he left and came back, he strived and strived and strived, and eventually he achieved.

there is so much work ahead of me, so many more bricks to be laid before i can take a step back and say "yes, this is good" but sometimes, like tonight, i can find brief glimpses of serenity, and a peace that knows i am moving in the right direction.  

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that person is selfish
that person is crazy
that person is a coward
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they were depressed for a long time and finally went through with it
there are always warning signs, so people know it's coming
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THAT IT WOULDN'T AFFECT ME


there is this social stigma around depression, suicide, etc.  i can't tell you what it is like to not be able to talk openly about my husband's death.  to see people either openly or privately distance themselves from my pain, search for reasons that he did it beyond the fact that he was ill and we didn't catch it in time, connect dots that aren't connected.  all so they can convince themselves that they will never know the pain, and i honestly hope they don't- but it's possible they will.  i know people whose lives…

dating in 2016, also huge LOL at even posting this.

Half of me can’t even believe I am writing this post.  Dating is gruesome, isn’t it?  Like most of life, I suppose.
The weekend that Jim died I was standing there, a wreck, while my phone was blowing up.  Alayne goes “who is texting you so much?”
I respond “oh those are just my tinder matches” 
and I know that not everybody gets the hilarity and all I can say is until you are in the fire, you don’t see the need for a respite from getting burned.
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i have this story that literally leaves people speechless.  most people when they hear it don’t even really know how to interact with me much less get involved romantically.  and i know eventually it won’t be such a big part of my identity, this widowed, grieving mom, but right now it is and if i want anything to do with the person then it’s like they have to know it.  
again, it’s a tough sell.